At OMB Hearing, Johnson Highlights Need For Regulatory Reform

WASHINGTON — Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) stressed the importance of reducing the federal deficit and reducing the regulatory burden during opening remarks at a hearing to consider U.S. Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.) to be director of the Office of Management and Budget. Excerpts of Chairman Johnson’s remarks and video can be found here and below.

“This committee has a mission statement: to enhance the economic and national security of America. Your position is going to be critical in terms of that enhancement. And no matter what problem we’re dealing with, no matter what challenge this nation faces, from my standpoint, the number one component of the solution is economic growth. We’re not even coming close to realizing the full potential of the American economy.”

“From my standpoint, there’s four basic reasons for that: We are not utilizing our energy resources to the extent we should, we must begin to. We do not have a competitive tax system. But the other two main reasons, I would argue, come fully under the jurisdiction of this committee, but also under the purview of your new responsibility if you’re confirmed … and it’s regulation and debt and the deficit.”

Not only are we almost $20 trillion in debt, we’re in debt over our head as a nation, the next 30 years according to the Congressional Budget Office, the projected deficit is projected to be $103 trillion, $10 trillion the first decade, 20 trillion the second, 68 trillion the third.”

“That’s the budget reality that we are faced with. The other thing we’re going to have to grapple with, in terms of economic growth, the other thing that’s really restraining the growth of our economy, is overregulation. It’s a massive burden… The number of studies show we are approach $2 trillion per year is the cost of complying with federal regulations.”

“It’s that regulatory burden that really is, I think, the number one reason why our economy is not realizing its full potential.”

“The overregulation has an enormous cost on our economy and that something that as director of OMB, hopefully have you a great deal of input in terms of rolling back and curbing so we can realize our full potential.”

The full hearing can be found here.