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Trump administration rushing to reverse hundreds of rules before Trump leaves office

President Trump Waving Outside Air Force 1One of President Donald Trump’s big goals when he was elected was to cut regulations and reduce the size of the federal government. Trump claimed when campaigning that regulations were harmful to American businesses and Wall Street.

The Trump administration eased restrictions on the finance industry, including those that had been put in place by the Obama administration after the 2008 financial crisis.

Some of the changes were small, but together they amount to a large regulatory shift, according to an article in the New York Times. Financial firms now face lesser consequences for taking too much risk or abusing customers, which could pave broader paths to a new financial crisis.

Among the regulatory cuts:

  • Skimping on consumer protections.
  • Reversing anti-discrimination policies.
  • Increasing room for risky business.

Other regulations the Trump administration is rushing to reverse include:

  • Easing limits on how many hours some truckers can spend behind the wheel.
  • Giving the government more freedom to collect biometric data from individuals applying for citizenship, including voice, iris, and facial recognition scans, instead of just the traditional fingerprint scan.
  • Setting federal standards for when workers can be classified as independent contractors rather than employees.

In an effort to adopt the new rules before Jan. 20, the Trump administration is limiting or ignoring requirements for public comments on some of the changes and ignoring critics who say the administration isn’t carrying out enough analysis, according to a New York Times article.

Rolling back environmental regulations has been a major thrust of the Trump administration. Among the efforts include opening up more land for oil and gas leasing by limiting wildlife protections and weakening environmental requirements for projects.

Trump and his agency heads have reversed 80 environmental regulations and 20 more are in the process of being rolled back.

Among the environmental rules affected are:

  • Increasing particulate and ozone emissions from power plants, car exhaust, and other sources.
  • Limiting how science is used in rule making and changing the way costs and benefits are evaluated to justify new rules.
  • Allowing railroads to move highly flammable liquefied natural gas on freight trains.
  • Removing protections from more than half the nation's wetlands.
  • Withdrawing the legal justification for restricting mercury emissions from power plants.
  • Opening up more land for oil and gas leasing by limiting wildlife protections and weakening environmental requirements for projects.

See “The Trump Administration Is Reversing More Than 100 Environmental Rules. Here’s the Full List” for more information.

Brookings also offers a data base where you can track the Trump administrations regulatory rollbacks called Tracking Deregulation in the Trump Era.

 

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