Last modified on September 26, 2018, at 14:57

Congressional Review

Congressional Review Act (Public Law 104–121) is a law that allows the Congress to nullify a federal agency regulation, within 60 days after it was issued through a joint resolution. The law was passed in the 104th U.S. Congress in 1996 as a part of Newt Gingrich's Contract with America.

The president must sign a resolution of disapproval that is first passed by Congress in order for the regulation to be nulified.[1] The CRA provides special rules to prevent resolutions of disappoval from being filibustered in either the House or the Senate.

U.S. President Donald Trump has successfully made use of the CRA to roll back regulations adopted toward the end of the Obama Administration. It is rare for the White House to switch political parties with the party of the new President also controlling both chambers of the new Congress. Prior to Trump's presidency, the Congressional Review Act had been used only once successfully, sixteen years prior.[2] When the window to use the CRA for the 115th Congress ended, Congress had passed and Trump had signed 14 CRA resolutions repealing Obama regulations[3][4] – significantly more than expected.[3][5] These actions were estimated to have saved $3.7 billion in regulatory costs and up to $36.2 billion in compliance costs.[3][6]

Some experts and analysts, including Todd Gaziano, who helped draft the Act, believe the CRA can be used to repeal earlier regulations due to the fact that many federal agencies did not follow the Act by submitting reports on regulations.[7]


  1. Of course, if the president did not sign it, then Congress could override the veto if there were 2/3rds support.
  2. Adriance, Sam (February 16, 2017). President Trump Signs First Congressional Review Act Disapproval Resolution in 16 Years. The National Law Review. Retrieved March 8, 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Dinan, Stephen (May 15, 2017). GOP rolled back 14 of 15 Obama rules using Congressional Review Act. The Washington Times. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
  4. GOP flips Obama-era regulations, claim a boon to economy. Breitbart News. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
  5. Shear, Michael D. (May 2, 2017). Trump Discards Obama Legacy, One Rule at a Time. The New York Times. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
  6. Follett, Andrew (May 9, 2017). Report: Trump Has Already Rolled Back $3.7 Billion In Obama-Era Regulations. The Daily Caller. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
  7. Miller, Jonathan (May 15, 2017). Congressional Review Act Gets a Workout. Roll Call. Retrieved May 16, 2017.

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