As his days in the White House dwindle to a few, Obama is in a frenzy to do as much damage as possible.
Even while he is on vacation in Hawaii, he designated vast swaths of the Arctic and Atlantic oceans as off limits to future oil leases, and planned more detainee transfers out of Guantanamo Bay.
Today, Obama made good on his threats to punish Russia for alleged hacks into Democrat emails and interfering in the Nov. 8 presidential election. The U.S. expelled 35 Russian diplomats and closed two Russian compounds in New York and Maryland, in retaliation against a campaign of harassment by Russia against American diplomats in Moscow, according to a senior U.S. official who told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
But that doesn’t mean America is stuck with what Obama has done.
On Christmas Day, Dec. 25, 2016, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said on Fox News that Obama’s final spree of policy changes and initiatives is part of a “desperate frenzy” to leave a legacy that will largely be reversed:
“His legacy is like one of those dolls that, as the air comes out of it, shrinks and shrink and shrinks. The things he’s done this week will be turned around … He’s in this desperate frenzy.”
Gingrich said the bulk of Obama’s legacy stems from executive actions, “almost all of which will be repudiated by Trump.”
A blogger named Stryker for The Last Line of Defense claims, without either naming or citing his source, that Trump already “has written his first executive order, dated it for the day he is inaugurated and placed it in a folder he carries with him ready to sign as soon as he’s finished taking the oath of office.” That executive order will erase “Obama’s entire eight years” by simply declaring “All orders from the executive office dated from January 20th, 2009 through January 19th, 2017 are hereby null and void.”
A more credible voice on this matter is Andy Koenig, the vice president of policy at Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce.
Writing for National Review, Keonig lays out the first phase of what a Trump administration can do:
- As President, Trump has the authority to simply erase Obama’s executive orders and memoranda on Day 1, without congressional approval or action. An example is the Paris Climate Agreement, which is estimated to cost each American family $20,000 of lost income by 2035.
- The Congressional Review Act enables Congress, via resolutions of disapproval, to simply undo rules issued by Obama in the last 60 legislative days — an estimated 199 proposed “major” rules that will cost the U.S. economy over $100 million each. Included among those major rules are some aspects of Obamacare’s implementation and overtime regulations that could reduce workers’ hours. The House and Senate, both now dominated by Republicans, need only a simple majority to pass a resolution of disapproval and send it to the president’s desk — a threshold that’s easily achieved following November’s elections. The Republicans simply have to do it. Let your Republican representatives in D.C. know that you want them to deploy the Congressional Review Act! Go here to contact your reps.
The second phase to undo what Obama had wrought in 8 years will be more laborious and take more time. But it can be done. Go to Koenig’s article, “A How-to Guide for Rolling Back Obama’s Regulatory State,” to find out how.