A steady stream of articles have appeared since November 9 on the number of Obama actions that could be eradicated by the Trump administration if it desired to do so.
Because of inclination, contempt, and political weakness, Obama ruled by the so-called “rule making authority” of federal regulatory agencies. If you aren’t familiar with this you need to get familiar because unelected, unanswerable bureaucrats can create regulations that will result in fines, property forfeiture, and prison time if they are violated.
Under Obama, backyard mud puddles are regulated as “waterways of the United States.” Fake science is embraced in his anti-fracking rules. As much food is thrown away as eaten in school lunch programs because kids won’t eat dirt and twigs. The coal industry has been devastated. And on and on and on. (Here is a backgrounder on rulemaking, if you are awake it should scare you.)
When viewed in the context of “major rules,” that is, rules which cost the US economy at least $100,000,000 annually, the Obama regime has been a veritable rulemaking Terminator in the war it has carried out on the United States.
This undemocratic and patently un-Constitutional (at least in the way anyone before FDR’s tame Supreme Court dealt with the issue conceived of the Constitution) means of governance has been aided and abetted by Congress regardless of which party is in charge. Agencies get to be the strict parent and write unpleasant and even stupid regulations. Congress complains. Even when Congress did intervene, in the guise of the Congressional Review Act, is set up an unworkable scheme in which the president of the administration promulgating a regulation has to consent to Congress rescinding the regulation.
Rather than rescind regulations that a future Democrat president could reinstate, Trump needs to work with Congress to strip agencies of their ability to make rules that require observation by companies, individuals or governments without the consent of Congress as expressed in legislation. This, unfortunately, will require a Congress that is actually concerned about the erosion of its powers to act. And there is scant evidence of the will power to do that.