Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Politics

Separation of Powers

At The Corner Steve (following up on his NLT post below) weighs in with a post about the proposed REINS Act, which, "would require that Congress vote on any proposed regulation that would impose a cost on the economy of $100 million or more."

Isn't that a legislative veto?

Of course, the legislatve veto might be, in some ways, a reasonable response to the delegation of legislative powers to the executive branch or, even worse, to unelected, permanent bureaucracies.

Personally, I think it would be sounder constitutionally, to follow the "Sunshine Commission" model, created by Charles Francis Adams, II, after the Civil War. Adams proposed that the executive bureaucracies would propose regulations and ship them to the legislature before they became law.  (The "Sunshine" provision had to do with the one power these agencies had--to require information from railroads, so that the agencies could know what was going on before they proposed rules).

Adapting that model, no proposed regulation would become law unless it was passed by the legislature and signed by the exective (subject to the 2/3 override provision, of course).  That would pass constitutional muster more easily, and end the delegation of legislative power to the executive branch and the bureaucracy.  It would also obviate concern about bureaucrats gaming the $100 million cost limitation.

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