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Bush Administration And Regulations
The New York Times recently ran an article on the Bush Administration's record on regulation to date. The article has the usual spin about how this Administration is pro-business. What Winston found interesting, however, is the comparison between this Presidential Administration and the previous three, which include one Democrat and two Republicans.

The analysis shows that the current Bush Administration is imposing far less regulatory costs on business than did either President Reagan or the first President Bush, both Republicans, and the decline in new regulatory costs began during the Clinton Administration. According to the article, average new regulation cost during 1987 and 1988 (President Reagan) was $8.1 billion. During 1989 through 1992 (President Bush the father), it was $8.5 billion. During 1993 through 2000 (President Clinton), it was $6.2 billion. During 2001 through 2003 (the second President Bush), it was $1.6 billion.

Consequently, the current administration has so far imposed far less new regulatory costs than the previous three administrations, but the most expensive by far of the four were both Republican. All this is too deep for Winston to fathom because he is only a dog, but a human might infer from these numbers that there is a decline in federal regulatory costs that began in the early nineties and is accelerating, and that this decline is not restricted to Republican administrations. Perhaps there is less need for new regulations now given the vast body of previous regulations already on the books.

  • Click for Times article.
  • Click for graph comparing administrations by new regulation costs.

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