On Tuesday President Trump signed an executive order calling for federal agencies to find and remove red tape in order to combat unemployment and stimulate the economy (https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/may/19/donald-trump-signing-broad-order-to-speed-deregula/). President Trump said, "We’re fighting for the livelihoods of American workers, and we must continue to cut through every piece of red tape that stands in our way. With millions of Americans forced out of work by the virus, it’s more important than ever to remove burdens that destroy American jobs in a few minutes.”
As it currently stands, the unemployment rate is at 14.70%, however today also marks a milestone as every state is now in some form of phase for reopening. This order comes in direct opposition to the Democrat led $3 trillion relief package that the house recently passed. This relief package would extend unemployment benefits and bailout state and local governments among other provisions. Many Republicans have opposed this measure, arguing that this would disincentivize returning to work and stall economic growth.
The president's actions should not come to anyone's surprise. Cutting regulations and bureaucracy, and "draining the swamp" served as primary pillars of the Trump campaign in 2016. Trump has since followed through, throwing out hundreds of EPA regulations and cutting funding to programs in his first few years. Trump has faced criticism from opponents who worry that he is undoing many of the measures from the previous administration. Supports have lauded his efforts, having expressed frustration with the ever-growing administrative state.
Russ Vought, acting director of the Office of Management and Budget, said, “Typically when our country has faced a crisis, Washington responds by grabbing more power. President Trump understands that to get the economy moving, the power needs to be given back to the people and entrepreneurs. If a bureaucratic rule needs to be suspended during a time of crisis to help the American people, we should ask ourselves if it makes sense to keep at all.” We have yet to see how far these cuts will extend or how long they will last, but this could serve as a boost to the president's reelection bid if they prove to be successful.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci