WINNING: President Trump Symbolically Cuts Red Tape of Government Regulations

Blond man in suit cuts large symbolic red tape with dignitaries behind him.

On Thursday, President Donald Trump celebrated his administration's dedication to cutting government regulations, with a ceremony where he physically cut a huge strand of red tape. Corny, but impressive nonetheless.

"This excessive regulation does not just threaten our economy, it threatens our entire Constitution. And it does nothing, other than delay and cost much more," President Trump declared. On the campaign trail, Trump had promised that for every new regulation, he would cut two old ones. On Thursday, he announced his administration had overshot that goal — annihilating 22 regulations for every new one.

In a statement that would make every small-government conservative glow with pride, the president declared, "Congress has abandoned much of its responsibility to legislate, and has instead given unelected regulators extraordinary power to control the lives of others."

Conservatives have long complained of the way Congress really works. Rather than passing regulations directly so that individual congressmen are tied to every piece of government red tape, Congress passes a bill like the Clean Air Act. The act sets out a goal — Americans should have clean air — and sets up an agency to make rules to achieve that goal.

This practice separates the people's representatives from the results of their lawmaking. If constituents complain, lawmakers can blame the agency, or promise to add yet another law to fix the problem in question. "So many of these enormous regulatory burdens were imposed on our citizens with no vote, no debate, and no accountability," the president explained.

Trump articulated the problem with this principle, and the fact that it is a threat to the Constitution, which gives Congress — and only Congress — the ability to make laws. The Constitution did this in order to make the lawmakers accountable to the people. Regulation sidesteps this process.

Trump made another excellent point, however, declaring that "regulation is still taxation." Many studies have suggested the average American family pays more in hidden regulatory costs than in direct taxes. A report this May estimated that if regulatory costs trickled down, they would leave the average American family with a $1,409 bill, in addition to the taxes they already pay.

"By ending excessive regulations, we are defending democracy, and draining the swamp," the president declared. "Unchecked regulation undermines our freedoms and zaps our national spirit. It destroys our economy. So many companies that are destroyed by regulation. And it destroys jobs."