Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is making his agenda clear. His pick for White House Press Secretary has announced that an executive order will be signed on January 20 to halt regulations issued by President Donald Trump in the final weeks of his first term.
“We’re announcing today that, like other incoming administrations have done before, the Biden-Harris White House will issue a memo to take effect on the afternoon Eastern Time on Jan. 20 that will halt or delay midnight regulations, actions taken by the Trump administration that will not have taken effect by Inauguration Day,” Jen Psaki, Biden’s pick for White House press secretary, told reporters on December 30 during a virtual press conference.
One example given by Psaki is a final rule dealing with the classification of independent contractors that is expected to be published by the Department of Labor before January 20.
Biden’s executive order “would potentially freeze this rule and not allow it to be implemented,” she said.
“Issuing a regulatory freeze is standard practice for an incoming administration, but this freeze will apply not only to regulations, but also guidance documents, documents that can have enormous consequences on the lives of American people,” Psaki added.
Joe Biden‘s allies in Congress are also attempting to fight actions taken by President Trump since the election.
New York Democrat Representative Carolyn Maloney, chairwoman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, along with other lawmakers has introduced the Midnight Regulations Review Act. This act would require that the Government Accountability Office provide Congress with a list of major rules enacted during the end of a presidential administration that are able to be repealed by Congress through the Congressional Review Act.
The White House has not yet commented on this announcement.
President Trump took similar actions upon taking office. Between Election Day in 2016 and January 5, 2017, the Obama administration released 145 regulations. Trump issued a memo to federal agencies directing them to halt the processing of regulations until a department or agency head appointed or designated by the president reviewed and approved it.