Officially known as H.R. 861, the bill by Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz contains just one simple but telling line: “The Environmental Protection Agency shall terminate on Dec. 31, 2018.”
In an email reportedly sent to his colleagues prior to the bill’s unveiling on Feb. 3, Gaetz explained exactly why such drastic action was necessary, according to The Huffington Post, which claims to have obtained a copy of said email.
“Our small businesses cannot afford to cover the costs associated with compliance, too often leading to closed doors and unemployed Americans,” Gaetz reportedly wrote. “It is time to take back our legislative power from the EPA and abolish it permanently.
“Today, the American people are drowning in rules and regulations promulgated by unelected bureaucrats, and the Environmental Protection Agency has become an extraordinary offender,” he added.
He was right. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the EPA’s rules have hit “everyone from farmers to manufacturers to energy producers to construction companies” driving many either into crushing debt or outright closure.
Without the EPA’s weighing like an anchor on the neck of American industry, an economy that’s been moribund for eight years under the previous administration could come roaring back.
The agency’s regulations have been especially damaging to the coal industry, which reportedly lost at least 83,000 jobs and 400 mines during the EPA-friendly tenure of President Barack Obama, according to a report from The Daily Caller in September.
“As conservatives, we must understand that states and local communities are best positioned to responsibly regulate the environmental assets within their jurisdictions,” Gaetz’s email continued. “I ask for your support in eliminating this abusive and costly agency.”
Three fellow Republican lawmakers wound up co-sponsoring the Florida lawmaker’s bill: Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie, Mississippi Rep. Steven M. Palazzo and Georgia Rep. Barry Loudermilk.
As of Feb. 17, the bill had not yet moved any farther in the House. But if Gaetz’s Republican peers would prefer not to lose in the primaries in 2018, then they should probably hurry up and get this bill passed quickly.
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H/T The Daily Caller