President Obama today will sign an executive order to make clear the operating principle of the US government is to strike the right balance with regulations, neither "placing unreasonable burdens on business—burdens that have stifled innovation and have had a chilling effect on growth and jobs" nor failing to "protect the public interest."
The president made the announcement in an oped in the conservative opinion pages of the Wall Street Journal, in yet another sign his move may be based in part in moving towards the political center (or at least being perceived as doing so.)
The administration, the president writes, is "making it our mission to root out regulations that conflict, that are not worth the cost, or that are just plain dumb."
The executive order "requires that federal agencies ensure that regulations protect our safety, health and environment while promoting economic growth. And it orders a government-wide review of the rules already on the books to remove outdated regulations that stifle job creation and make our economy less competitive. It's a review that will help bring order to regulations that have become a patchwork of overlapping rules, the result of tinkering by administrations and legislators of both parties and the influence of special interests in Washington over decades."
The president recently brought in Bill Daley as his new chief of staff. Daley, a former executive with JP Morgan Chase & Co., had previously criticized the White House and Democratic leaders in Congress, writing in a Washington Post oped that Democrats "need to move back toward the center -- and in doing so, set the stage for the many years' worth of leadership necessary to produce the sort of pragmatic change the American people actually want."