Romney Weighs in on REINS

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Presidential candidate’s plan outlines his regulatory reform stance.

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Along with the other candidates for the Republican presidential nomination, Mitt Romney would make regulatory reform one of his top priorities if elected, according to a plan his campaign released yesterday.

In the 160-page jobs plan, Romney placed blame for the United States’ economic woes on government regulation. “The United States cannot afford to tie itself in more regulatory knots,” the plan stated.

The regulatory section of the report included many of the ideas that Republicans, and even an occasional Democrat, are already proposing in Congress, such as reforming financial regulations, amending the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act, and imposing a regulatory PAYGO requirement, an idea that would essentially require agencies to eliminate old regulations before adopting new ones.

The Romney report also made clear where the candidate stands on the REINS Act, a legislative proposal to require federal agencies to gain congressional approval before significant new regulations could take effect.

Romney even promised that if Congress were to fail to pass the REINS Act, he would as President “issue an executive order instructing all agencies that they must invite Congress to vote up or down on their major regulations and forbidding them from putting those regulations into effect without congressional approval.”

Rick Perry’s campaign responded to the Romney plan by claiming the Texas Governor actually has the best track record of any candidate when it comes to reducing regulatory burdens. Jon Huntsman, who announced his own jobs plan in a speech last week, echoed his own call for regulatory reform in an op-ed in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal.

The candidates for the Republican presidential nomination square off in a debate tonight at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.