13 ways Trump has rolled back government regulations in his first 100 days–

13 ways Trump has rolled back government regulations in his first 100 days–58gh.,b58

The Daily Signal exists as an alternative to the mainstream media. We are a dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts funded solely by the financial support of the general public.  We need your help! Not only are these media outlets going after our reputation, but the White House Correspondents’ Association is facing pressure to exclude us.

As President Donald Trump reaches his 100th day in the White House on April 29, he will have worked with Congress to rescind more regulations using the Congressional Review Act than any other president.

“We’re excited about what we’re doing so far. We’ve done more than that’s ever been done in the history of Congress with the CRA,” Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., told The Daily Signal in an interview, referring to the law called the Congressional Review Act. The Congressional Review Act, the tool Trump and lawmakers are using to undo these regulations, allows Congress to repeal executive branch regulations in a certain window of time.

“Under the Congressional Review Act, Congress is given 60 legislative days to disapprove a rule and receive the president’s signature, after which the rule goes into effect,”. Passed in 1996 in concert with the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act and then-Speaker Newt Gingrich’s Contract with America reform agenda, the Congressional Review Act is what the Congressional Research Service calls “an oversight tool that Congress may use to overturn a rule issued by a federal agency.”

The law also prevents agencies from creating similar rules with similar language.

Until this year, the law had been used successfully only once—in 2001, when Congress and President George W. Bush rescinded a regulation regarding workplace injuries promulgated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration during the Clinton administration.

Here’s a look at 13 regulatory rollbacks Congress has passed and Trump has signed:

  1. Regulations governing the coal mining industry (H.J. Res 41). could save American businesses as much as $600 million annually,” Spicer said.
  2. Regulations defining streams in the coal industry (H.J. Res 38). –The so-called Stream Protection Rule included “vague definitions of what classifies as a stream. For many regulations promulgated by the Obama administration, they fundamentally disregarded the nature of the federal-state relationship when it comes to energy production and environmental protection. The Stream Protection Rule … removed flexibility from mining steps and simply ignored that states have regulations in place to protect water quality. State and local environmental agencies’ specific knowledge of their region enables them to tailor regulations to promote economic activity while protecting the habitat and environment.
  3. Regulations restricting firearms for disabled citizens (H.J. Res 40). “Those rights will no longer be able to be revoked without a hearing and without due process. It will take more than the personal opinion of a bureaucrat,” Grassley said on the Senate floor. But Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Calif.,  said the regulation didn’t cover “just people having a bad day. These are not people simply suffering from depression or anxiety. These are people with a severe mental illness who can’t hold any kind of job or make any decisions about their affairs. So the law says very clearly they shouldn’t have a firearm.
  4. A rule governing the government contracting process (H.J. Res. 37). Undoing the regulation will cut costs to businesses and free federal contractors from “unnecessary and burdensome processes that would result in delays, and decreased competition for federal government contracts,” Spicer said.
  5. A rule covering public lands (H.J. Res. 44). that the Bureau of Land Management’s rule restricted the control that states and their citizens had, especially in the West. “The Obama administration wanted to shift land policy from local governments with specific expertise to the federal government, basically shifting even more of the land management policy away from those affected by it,” Lee said. “Repealing this harmful rule will go a long way toward empowering local stakeholders and ensuring that Arizona’s cattlemen, miners, and rural land users have a voice in the planning process,”
  6. Reporting requirements regarding college teachers (H.J. Res. 58). The rule mandated annual reporting by states “to measure the performance and quality of teacher preparation programs and tie them to program eligibility for participation in the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education grant program,” that the rule “gave the federal Department of Education power to evaluate teacher preparation programs at universities, and to link college students’ access to federal financial aid in the form of TEACH grants to the rating of the programs.”  “University programs,” Ryland added, “would be rated based on the effectiveness of their teaching graduates, with effectiveness determined by elementary and secondary students’ test scores and achievement gains.”
  7. Regulations on state education programs (H.J. Res. 57). Congress and Trump rescinded federal rules that “require states to have an accountability system based on multiple measures, including school quality or student success, to ensure that states and districts focus on improving outcomes and measuring student progress,” Spicer said. The repeal is the first step in “a reconceptualization of Washington’s role in education,” Ryland said.   “These regulations were prime examples of federal micromanagement,” she said. “They were highly prescriptive and highly complex, serving only to put more power in the hands of bureaucrats and to distract schools and teachers from the work of educating students.”
  8. Drug-testing requirements (H.J. Res 42). Spicer saidthe regulation mandates an “arbitrarily narrow definition of occupations and constrains a state’s ability to conduct a drug-testing program in its unemployment insurance system.” Ask that states be allowed to implement their own policies. “We believe this rule should be replaced with a new rule that allows increased flexibility for states to implement … drug testing that best fits the needs of each state,” the governors said in the February letter.
  9. Hunting regulations for wildlife preserves in Alaska (H.J. Res 69). These regulations restricted Alaska’s ability “to manage hunting of predators on national wildlife refuges in Alaska,” In a formal statement, Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, called the rule “another example of the federal government’s determination these past eight years to destroy a state’s ability to manage their wildlife.”
  10. Internet privacy rule (S.J.Res. 34). Published during the final months of Obama’s presidency, the rule sought to force “new privacy standards on internet service providers, allowing bureaucrats in Washington to pick winners and losers in the industry. helps keep consumers in charge of how they share their electronic information. “My resolution is the first step toward restoring the [Federal Trade Commission’s] light-touch, consumer-friendly approach,” Flake said. “It will not change or lessen existing consumer privacy protections. It empowers consumers to make informed choices on if and how their data can be shared.”
  11. Rule for logging workplace injuries (H.J. 83). the rule “disapproved” of a Labor regulation “extending the statute of limitation for claims against employers failing to maintain records of employee injuries.”  “This OSHA power grab was completely unlawful,” said Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Ala., chairman of the House workforce protections subcommittee. “It would have done nothing to improve workplace safety while creating significant regulatory confusion for small businesses.” “There was a definite disconnect between the previous administration, and even previous Republican administrations, on doing things on their own and not going through the proper legislative process,” Collins said.
  12.  Rule preventing states from withholding funds from Planned Parenthood (H.J. Res 43). By undoing this rule, Congress and the president allow states to opt out of letting federal funds go to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. “This resolution that [Trump] signed today overturns a regulation that was put in place by the previous administration on their way out the door that would have taken away the right of states to set their own policies and priorities for Title X family-planning programs,” “Reversing this will mean that states can continue prioritizing taxpayer dollars for providers who offer real health care to women–not abortions,”
  13. Rule on retirement savings (H.J. Res 67). The rule allowed state governments “to trap individuals’ savings in accounts that individuals cannot access or control,” , the rule allowed states to create public retirement funds. However, it also eliminated protections from those public plans that initially were covered under a law that set standards for private sector employee pension and health plans. Critics said the rule removed protections from employees and encouraged employers to drop employees from retirement plans–and put them on the government-run plan–because of high costs. “Any new employer that’s just starting up is never going to set up their own plan now because why would they do that when they have a cost-free, liability-free option,” Greszler said, adding:  There are costs associated with [creating retirement accounts for employees] and there’s the legal liability with it. So they’re probably going to shift their employees into these plans that have no protections; they can’t make contribution into them … it’s like the Obamacare for savings.

sources–sarah sleem, cra, paul larkin, racheel del uidice, sean spicer, anne ryland, heritage, melanie israel, rachel greszler,

Mike Lee warns Trump about taxpayer funding of Soros groups overseas-

Mike Lee warns Trump about taxpayer funding of Soros groups overseas–3gh.,b49

For eight years, U.S. foreign assistance was tied to a leftist political agenda rather than American interests, and it’s now up to President Donald Trump to correct that, Sen. Mike Lee said Tuesday. Lee took particular aim at U.S. support during the Obama administration for the overseas work of nonprofits bankrolled by liberal billionaire George Soros.

“Whatever one’s views about abortion, energy regulation, alternative family structures, they are neither core international priorities of the American people, nor essential to American national security. They are domestic political controversies, pet causes of a sort of privileged, globalist elite,” Lee said in the speech at The Heritage Foundation.

“President Trump and his team must change the culture of American diplomacy towards one that prioritizes American interests and respects the sovereignty and self-determination of other peoples,” Lee said.

Trump’s fiscal year 2018 budget proposal would cut funding for the State Department and USAID by 28 percent.

When the State Department and USAID have provided millions of American taxpayer dollars to organizations in Eastern Europe associated with well-known progressive advocates like George Soros and his Open Society Foundations, who make no secrets about the kinds of politics they support?

The mission of USAID, which has a $22.7 billion annual budget, is to fight poverty and promote democracy abroad.

“USAID is committed to accountability and transparency and to the oversight of U.S. government funds to ensure they are not subject to waste, fraud, or abuse,” the spokesman said in an email. “USAID regularly conducts rigorous reviews and audits of programs implemented by partner organizations. These reviews are conducted to measure the programs’ effectiveness and efficiency and to ensure their compliance with applicable statutes, regulations, and policies.”

From 2012 through 2016, USAID gave $4.8 million to Foundation Open Society-Macedonia, a division of the Soros-funded nonprofit, “in partnership with four local civil society organizations,” according to the agency’s website.

We do spend nearly a billion dollars of our own money each year funding a wide range of groups that promote human rights, democracy, and good governance.

Lee and five other Republican senators last month wrote Secretary of State Rex Tillerson asking for a review of USAID dollars going to fund political causes, including Soros’ Open Society Foundations.

USAID doesn’t have a presence in Ireland, for example, according to James Walsh, a former member of Ireland’s senate. Walsh spoke at Heritage’s forum about how the State Department has backed progressive causes in Ireland, including abortion and same-sex marriage.

source–fred lucas, the dailt signal, mike lee, katie o, usaid, maxim tucker, open society

Trump using executive orders at unprecedented pace-

Trump using executive orders at unprecedented pace–71GH.,B12-1

President Trump signed the 30th executive order of his presidency on Friday, capping off a whirlwind period that produced more orders in his first 100 days than for any president since Harry Truman.  The rash of executive orders underlines Trump’s focus on reversing as much of the Obama administration’s policy agenda as he can, even as the new administration struggles to find legislative victories in Congress.

It fits Trump’s showman persona, as well: signing ceremonies for his orders are often in the Oval Office or in a well-furnished executive building, and see the president surrounded by administration officials, members of Congress or everyday Americans who, Trump says, he’s trying to help.

Trump and his aides have touted the orders as they have put a shine on his first 100 days in office. “No administration has accomplished more in the first 90 days,” Trump declared earlier this month at a Kenosha, Wis., event.

“When you look at the totality of what we’ve accomplished on job creation, on immigration, on trade, it is unbelievable what he has been able to do,” press secretary Sean Spicer said earlier this week. “When you think about what he started — he’ll move forward on tax reform, healthcare, on immigration, on trade — it’s been a hugely successful first 100 days.”

Trump’s ban on travel to the United States by people several predominantly Muslim nations has been stopped twice by the courts, to Trump’s consternation. A directive to take away funding from sanctuary cities was also blocked by a federal judge.

“Executive orders sort of came about more recently. Nobody ever heard of an executive order, then all of a sudden Obama — because he couldn’t get anybody to agree with him — he starts signing them like they’re butter, so I want to do away with executive orders for the most part.”

Trump’s orders span industries and policy areas, from his inauguration day order on the Affordable Care Act to immigration, education and financial services.

No sector has drawn as much of the Trump administration’s attention than energy and the environment.

Trump signed an order in March aiming to undo President Obama’s entire climate change agenda, including a cornerstone regulation on greenhouse gas emissions. He’s also signed orders to reconsider fuel standards for vehicles, review monument designations he says stifle energy development and begin the process of advancing oil drilling in the Arctic.

source–the hill, devin henry, tim cama

here’s how wrong past environmental predictions have been

here’s how wrong past environmental predictions have been–kh21.,b38

Let’s take a look at past predictions to determine just how much confidence we can have in today’s environmentalists’ predictions.

In 1970, when Earth Day was conceived, the late George Wald, a Nobel laureate biology professor at Harvard University, predicted, “Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind.” Also in 1970, Paul Ehrlich, a Stanford University biologist and best-selling author of “The Population Bomb,” declared that the world’s population would soon outstrip food supplies.

Reporters at the Washington Post, Huffington Post, and Wall Street Journal are attacking The Daily Signal for our press access at the White House.  They are afraid The Daily Signal is providing an alternative to the usual left-wing or establishment media spin. Now, they are using their “mainstream” media megaphones to diminish The Daily Signal.

The Daily Signal exists as an alternative to the mainstream media. We are a dedicated team of more than 100 journalists and policy experts funded solely by the financial support of the general public.

The Progressive, he predicted, “The death rate will increase until at least 100-200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next 10 years.”

He gave this warning in 1969 to Britain’s Institute of Biology: “If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000.”

On the first Earth Day, Ehrlich warned, “In 10 years, all important animal life in the sea will be extinct.”

Despite such predictions, Ehrlich has won no fewer than 16 awards, including the 1990 Crafoord Prize, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences’ highest award.

In International Wildlife (July 1975), Nigel Calder warned, “The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind.”

In Science News (1975), C.C. Wallen of the World Meteorological Organization is reported as saying, “The cooling since 1940 has been large enough and consistent enough that it will not soon be reversed.”

In 2000, climate researcher David Viner told The Independent, a British newspaper, that within “a few years,” snowfall would become “a very rare and exciting event” in Britain. “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said. “Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past.”

In the following years, the U.K. saw some of its largest snowfalls and lowest temperatures since records started being kept in 1914.

The world has been chilling sharply for about 20 years. If present trends continue, the world will be about 4 degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990 but 11 degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age.

Dr. S. Dillon Ripley, secretary of the Smithsonian (Institution), believes that in 25 years, somewhere between 75 and 80 percent of all the species of living animals will be extinct.”

Scientist Harrison Brown published a chart in Scientific American that year estimating that mankind would run out of copper shortly after 2000. Lead, zinc, tin, gold, and silver were to disappear before 1990.

Erroneous predictions didn’t start with Earth Day.

In 1939, the U.S. Department of the Interior said American oil supplies would last for only another 13 years. In 1949, the secretary of the interior said the end of U.S. oil supplies was in sight.

Having learned nothing from its earlier erroneous claims, in 1974 the U.S. Geological Survey said the U.S. had only a 10-year supply of natural gas.

The fact of the matter, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, is that as of 2014, we had 2.47 quadrillion cubic feet of natural gas, which should last about a century.

source–walter williams, the daily signal, george wald, paul ehrlich, cc wallen, david viner, kenneth nelson, harrison brown, wash post, wsj, huffingtonpost,

Five questions for Trump after FBI firing

the hill—58jh.,b58

Here are five unanswered questions raised by Comey’s dismissal.

Why now and not in January?

The administration argues that Comey’s dismissal is a result of his handling of the Clinton probe — which was officially completed in July and was temporarily resurrected when investigators uncovered new emails in October. But questions swirled about the timing. Why did Trump only now, in May, fire Comey over a breach of conduct that took place months previous?

Who ordered the review by Rosenstein?

The origins of Rosenstein’s review of Comey’s job performance remain murky, raising questions about whether Trump directed the probe. White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters late Tuesday that Rosenstein initiated the effort himself after he was confirmed by the Senate two weeks ago and that Trump was not aware of it until he received the recommendation earlier in the day. But media reports have appeared to contradict the White House’s account. The New York Times reported that senior Justice Department and White House officials were working on building a case against Comey since last week, and that Attorney General Jeff Sessions was asked to come up with reasons to oust him.

What was Jeff Sessions’s involvement?

The White House said Comey’s dismissal came at the recommendation of both Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Rosenstein. Sessions’s decision to step down, in March, put Rosenstein in the driver’s seat for any charges in the case. Perhaps hinting that the White House anticipated that criticism, it was a memo from Rosenstein — not Sessions — that detailed the administration’s rationale for firing Comey.

Who knew and who signed off on it?

A major outstanding question surrounding Comey’s ouster is who in the White House and elsewhere knew about the plans to fire the embattled FBI director and when — and who signed off on it. According to documents released by the White House, Trump informed Comey of his firing on Tuesday — the same day that he received a letter from Sessions concluding that “a fresh start is needed at the FBI.” Rosenstein sent a memorandum to Sessions the same day underpinning his recommendation with the argument that Comey mishandled the Clinton email investigation.

What is the status of the Russia investigation?

Comey’s sudden firing has thrown the future of the FBI’s Russia investigation into doubt, accelerating calls for a special prosecutor to take control of the highly sensitive probe. His ouster came weeks after he publicly confirmed, with the permission of the Justice Department, that the bureau is investigating the possibility that Trump associates colluded with Moscow in its meddling in the presidential election. The investigation will continue under the supervision of acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a 20-year veteran of the bureau.

source– cnn, the hill, katie bo williams, jordan fabian, morgan chalfant




Clinton’s towering fiasco-

Clinton’s towering fiasco–47jh.,b43

The September 2016 article in Politico championing Hillary Clinton’s use of “data analytics” now looks—how shall we put it?—rather premature.

Politico swooned that computer algorithms “underlie nearly all of the Clinton campaign’s most important strategic decisions.” Computer guru Elan Kriegel had crunched the numbers for campaign manager Robby Mook, allowing Team Clinton to precisely target her potential voters and thus not waste one dime on appealing to the deplorables.

“Clintonites saw it as their secret weapon in building an insurmountable delegate lead over Bernie Sanders,” Politico reported. And come the general election the Clintonistas were downright giddy about the edge Big Data was giving them. With the hopelessly old-school Trump team “investing virtually nothing in data analytics during the primary and little since, Kriegel’s work isn’t just powering Clinton’s campaign, it is providing her a crucial tactical advantage.”

But don’t put all the blame on the geek squad: The reason Hillary Clinton lost, first and foremost, is that Hillary Clinton was the dismalest, dreadfulest of candidates. That said, the emphasis on data analytics was of a piece with Hillary’s overall awfulness. Understanding the data approach, Politico wrote before the election, “is to understand how Clinton has run her campaign—precise and efficient, meticulous and effective, and, yes, at times more mathematical than inspirational.” The reporter was more right than he knew.

Still, the Clinton team’s overconfidence in data analytics was a typical error made with new technologies. It isn’t just overconfidence in what the technology can achieve, it is that the people using the technologies are ever tempted to push out to the edge of what the technologies can do as a way of proving not only the power of the new machines and methods and materials, but the prowess of the technologists themselves.

This tendency not to leave enough room for mistakes and the unexpected. The Clinton campaign was similarly seduced by the promised power of the new technology at its disposal: Mook even recently acknowledged that his data, no matter how precise, couldn’t stand up to “an overwhelming gale force desire for change.” Yes, the Citicorp Tower Imperative in action. Though The Scrapbook suspects the Clinton edifice was so shaky not even an army of welders could have saved it.

source-weekly standard, elan kriegel, politico,

A military in need-

A military in need–14gh,b37

But adversaries and events have a way of forcing a president’s hand. In recent weeks and days we’ve seen cruise missile strikes against a Syrian air base, the “mother of all bombs” released on an ISIS stronghold in Afghanistan, an uptick in diplomatic and military pressure on North Korea, worsening ties with Vladimir Putin’s Russia, increased U.S. military involvement in the fight against ISIS in Syria and Iraq, and plans to add more ground forces into Afghanistan. All of which suggests that the logic behind the president’s desire to rebuild the country’s military capabilities and fix the current massive shortfalls in military readiness is both reasonable and urgent.

While the effort to get a defense appropriations bill for the current year through Congress is long overdue, the military services are in need of an immediate infusion of cash. They can and should be provided with that through an emergency supplemental spending bill for the Pentagon.

The reasons for an immediate supplemental are many. To begin with, funding the military at the levels set for last year through a continuing resolution (as is currently the case) only deepens existing problems in readiness caused by too few funds, existing operations, and aging equipment. Toss in more demands on the military, as the administration seems to be doing, and the readiness problem is compounded.

But any defense supplemental has to do more than simply fund readiness. Today’s modernization is tomorrow’s readiness, as the service chiefs are fond of saying. And there are no shortage of “shovel-ready” procurement programs on hot production lines that can be cost-effectively accelerated, such as destroyer and cruiser upgrades, Army vehicle improvements, increased procurement of the Joint Strike Fighter (F-35), and munitions buys across the services. Moreover, the Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps require immediate expansion in end-strength to meet current mission demands.

President Trump’s own supplemental budget request for the Pentagon was $30 billion. The figure was based on what the military services thought they could reasonably spend in the remaining months of the 2017 fiscal year. It’s a first step but insufficient.

The U.S. military could easily allocate and absorb another $45 billion in supplemental FY2017 spending over and above the amount the Trump team has proposed. And to alleviate the issue of spending extra funds before the end of the fiscal year, House Armed Services Committee chairman Mac Thornberry has proposed allowing funds to be obligated beyond the normal September 30 deadline. A supplemental of such size would begin to address the existing hole in readiness accounts, provide greater budget stability for the military services for planning, and allow the defense industrial base to begin heating up its production capabilities by hiring new machinists, welders, and the other highly skilled workers necessary to carry out any buildup.

The key is coming up with a new defense/nondefense spending ratio that provides an incentive for Democrats to allow an increase in defense spending to advance.

As things stand, OMB director Mick Mulvaney’s attempt to find sufficient “offsets” in the nondefense budgets to match the increase in defense spending dollar for dollar has been a nonstarter with Democrats. Finding that new “golden ratio” will require compromise by House Republicans and Senate Democrats and leadership from a White House that prioritizes national security.

Normally, a supplemental appropriations bill is only that. In this case, it could be, and should be, seen as much more.

source–mackenzie eaglen, gary schmitt, mac thornberry, wky std