Spotlight on Ernst’s Hostility to Regulations

January 20, 2015

Contact:
David Rosen, drosen@citizen.org, (202) 588-7742
Angela Bradbery, abradbery@citizen.org, (202) 588-7741
Brian Gumm, bgumm@foreffectivegov.org, (202) 683-4812

Tonight, following President Barack Obama’s 2015 State of the Union address, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) will deliver the Republican Party’s official response. In light of Ernst’s history of hostility toward federal agencies, laws and rules, the Coalition for Sensible Safeguards (CSS) considers it necessary to address the distortions and misleading statements that could find their way into her rebuttal speech.

Ernst and others have a history of advocating for extreme policy positions, including state nullification of federal laws and the regulations that implement them. They have also called for abolishing the IRS, the U.S. Department of Education, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. These approaches would not protect the middle class or small businesses, but they would do great harm to the American people and our economy.

These and other attacks against sensible safeguards are out of touch with the views of everyday people. Polling shows that nearly nine in 10 voters across party lines support tougher rules and enforcement. Americans know that effective standards and safeguards ensure a level playing field and save lives. Indeed, the latest Office of Management and Budget (OMB) report shows that regulations produced up to $863 billion in benefits during the past decade – as much as 15 times the costs.

But instead of having an honest debate, some members Congress keep rehashing the same old discredited studies overstating the costs of regulation while completely ignoring the benefits in order to justify legislation that would increase the influence of big corporations and their well-heeled lobbyists. Their real goal is to override decades of health, safety and environmental laws that protect our workers and families.

It’s clear the congressional majority isn’t looking out for Americans who work hard and play by the rules – not if they endorse the extreme policy positions Ernst is likely to raise this evening.

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The Coalition for Sensible Safeguards believes in regulations that protect American workers and families. We are a national alliance of 150 consumer, labor, scientific, research, good government, faith, community, health, environmental, and public interest groups representing millions of Americans. For more information about the coalition, go to www.sensiblesafeguards.org.