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Posted at 10:32 AM ET, 01/20/2011

Tom Toles is worth a thousand words

By Ezra Klein


By Ezra Klein  | January 20, 2011; 10:32 AM ET
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HA! Or a Senate Committee Chairman...

Posted by: RisingTideLiftsAllBoats | January 20, 2011 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Great illustration!

As one who voted for President Obama, I'm relieved to see him being a bit bolder (and a bit more plainspoken) when it comes to reduction of the size of the federal regulatory beast: it's rare to see agreement on any point, so I welcome the agreement that many regulations are simply foolish and unnecessarily invasive. I'm not at all surprised, though, to hear the EPA and other errant bureaucratic agencies to declare themselves exempt from the President's order; in fact, such agency obstructionism offers an excellent opportunity for President Obama to demonstrate his leadership and command ability.

The comment above -- "or a Senate Committee Chairman" -- is also spot-on: during the 112th Congress, it's likely that the last remaining supporters of big government -- the Buffalo -- will be found in the Senate rather than the House, Judicial Branch, or Executive Branch. This will likely be the undoing of some Senators... and it's not a purely partisan issue: like many of his peers, Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat, seems to shares the President's new embrace of smaller, more agile, less invasive federal government while many other Democrats and Republicans continue to advocate unwanted federal expansion.

When the Senate finally reconvenes to complete its first day on the job, we'll get a chance to see if Senate Democrats (in particular) and Republicans really mean what they said during their campaigns. For example, one of the three matters pending before the Senate is a rules change which requires advance notice of intent to object. Will Senator Reid, for example, obey this proposed new rule when considering HR 2? What about the many other bills that the House has already transmitted? Do Senators really want a more agile Senate, able to take a readily transparent up-or-down vote on every matter received from the House? Or do Senators prefer clinging to the power to obstruct and to over-regulate? We'll soon see!

Posted by: rmgregory | January 20, 2011 11:32 AM | Report abuse

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