Rich Lowry at Politico gets to the heart of the problem of creeping executive branch power.
In an excellent essay in the journal National Affairs, Chris DeMuth calls the regulatory agency “the most potent institutional innovation in American government since the Constitution.” He notes that the regulatory state has three hallmarks, at least since the 1970s when its independent power began to grow.
One, Congress delegates lawmaking to the agencies by giving them massive discretion in implementing the vaguest of mandates. Two, there are no constraints on their effective spending power since the costs of their rules “are borne almost entirely by the private sector.” Third, they enjoy “relative insulation from public debate and criticism.”
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