Added work from the Bush Administration
As if Obama doesn’t have enough to deal with: war in Iraq/Afghanistan, recession, eroding environment, and the Mideast now in chaos, the proponent for ‘change’ also will have to handle Midnight Regulations. Midnight regulations is a term for United States federal government regulations promulgated by executive branch agencies in the lame duck period of an outgoing President’s administration. Presidents Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush have made the most extensive use of midnight regulations; as it allows an outgoing President to put through the motions of regulatory changes at any branch of the government, and since U.S. federal law mandates a 60-day waiting period before any major regulatory changes, the elected President will have to deal with any beauracies regarding the law. All accountability to either pass or renege the law lies now on the elected President, even though the outgoing president put the law in motion. Democratically speaking, this is a sneaky way for an outgoing President to try to pass all the laws that he/she couldn’t during their presidency.
Thus, some Presidents try to publish new major regulations on November 21, 60 days before the new President’s inauguration on January 20. “Minor” regulations, those that have less than US$100 million in effect on the economy or do not have major social policy significance, have a similar 30-day waiting period
Already, it has been reported that the Bush Administration is feverently midnight regulating, touching everything from business practices, to removing environmental emissions caps for businesses, and even touching sensitive topics like Abortion. With the thought of Midnight regulations at the back of his mind, it is no wonder he has hit the ground running trying to deal with the Auto bailout, and stimulus packages, because come January 20, 2009, the weight of the world is on his shoulders.