While much of President Donald Trump's legislative agenda has been stalled by a gridlocked GOP-majority Congress, he has been able to dramatically reshape government regulation through executive orders. Trump's penchant for decreasing regulations has been compared to the early days of former President Ronald Reagan.
Over four months into his administration, Trump has issued fewer regulations than any modern president and has rescinded several major regulations passed by former President Barack Obama.
White House Domestic Policy Council Director Andrew Bremberg asserted that Trump was seeking to reshape U.S. regulation on a systemic level.
"I think it’s something that’s just been lost on people in terms of the regulatory sediment that has built up -- decade after decade after decade in many of these areas," Bremberg told Politico.
On Jan. 30, Trump signed an executive order mandating that for every new regulation passed, two would have to be dismantled.
"So if there's a new regulation, they have to knock out two," Trump said during the signing ceremony.
The president's ensuing efforts to dismantle regulations while limiting the number of new ones has resulted in a dramatic reduction in government regulation.
An analysis conducted by Clyde Wayne Crews Jr. of the Competitive Enterprise Institute found that the Trump administration marked the sharpest drop in regulations since Reagan, the Washington Examiner reports.
"The drop between Clinton and Bush was dramatic, but otherwise last time we saw anything comparable to today's reduction was when both regulations and Federal Register page counts dropped over a third under Reagan," Crews wrote.
Between Jan. 20 and May 31, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs implemented only 15 new regulations. During the same frame in former President George W. Bush's first term, the OIRA approved 114 new regulations.
"It's slowed to a crawl, and I’m sure for some folks, that's a demonstration that the administration is putting their money where their mouth is," regulatory watchdog Amit Narang of Public Citizen said. "But for us, this is really alarming."
Law professor Rena Steinzor of the University of Maryland shared similar concerns, asserting that Trump's success in deregulation was dangerous.
"He's done tremendous damage," Steinzor said. "I’ve been watching through six presidents, and all that pales in comparison to this."
Meanwhile, White House director of strategic initiatives Chris Liddell asserted that the Trump administration was working to stimulate job creation, "not just taking away regulations for the sake of it."