As a candidate, Donald Trump promised to roll back regulations saying his administration would eliminate 2 regulations for every new one implemented.
Skeptics of his promise bet the tactic would be that President Trump would use his rule-making power (not technically a regulation) to make good on his promise.
However, that has not been the case. Trump has cut both regulations and rules. And he has done so in record fashion.
“There has been a substantial reduction in the number of rules and regulations under Trump,” says Clyde Wayne Crews, Policy director at Competitive Enterprise Institute.
“It is a notable achievement that all three of the lowest-ever annual rule counts belong to Trump,” says Crews. “This an even more significant development given that some of Trump’s ‘rules’ are rules written to get rid of or replace other rules.”
Ironically, to cut regulations takes even more regulations, so the number of Trump’s new rules is even lower than the 2,964 listed in the final count of the Federal Register.
“In other words, even deregulation itself can grow the Federal Register, if aggressive enough, confounding interpretation taken in isolation,” Crews said.”Even without congressional action on regulatory liberalization, Trump has made significant strides in reducing the pace of regulation if not actual eliminations of the administrative state.”
Crews says it’s possible for Trump to continue this pace but certain things will need to fall into place. “To maintain momentum, steps to improve disclosure and measurement are worth pursuing in the New Year,” Crews wrote. “Trump’s next moves should be further executive actions on regulatory streamlining, with additional emphasis on agency guidance documents, and mandatory disclosure of regulatory burdens, including those of independent agencies.”