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Chairman Hensarling Floor Remarks on H.R. 1062, the SEC Regulatory Accountability Act


Washington, May 17 -

House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensalring (R-TX) delivered the following statement on the House floor today in support of H.R. 1062, the SEC Regulatory Accountability Act:


“I rise today to urge the adoption of H.R. 1062.  This is a bill that technically is about something called ‘cost benefit analysis.’  I know to some that sounds a little bit like Ph.D. economics, but, Mr. Chairman, what it is really about is ‘kitchen table’ economics. 

“When I go home to the Fifth District of Texas, what I hear from my constituents is that they are insecure in their jobs -- those who are lucky enough to have them.  We know that millions of our fellow citizens are unemployed or underemployed and those who are fortunate enough to have jobs wonder will they will have them tomorrow. 

“We know, again, that we are in the Great Recession, the non-recovery recovery.  And so the impact of the regulations that are promulgated in Washington, D.C. has a huge impact on ‘kitchen table’ economics – on whether or not our constituents are going to be able to put gas in the car to take their children to school, whether or not they are going to be able to help an elderly parent with their medical bills, how they are going to be able to put groceries on the table.  It is incumbent upon us, Mr. Chairman, to make sure that the rulemaking authority that this body helps grant the executive branch at least has to take into account how their rulemaking impacts hard-working American citizens and those who wish to work hard.  So this is a very, very simple bill, Mr. Chairman.  It simply says that the Securities and Exchange Commission has to adopt cost-benefit analysis to ensure that the advertised benefits of one of their rules is measured against the actual cost of what they are doing. 

“This is vitally important.  Mr. Chairman, as you well know, this body had a vote yesterday to repeal the Affordable Care Act, or dare I say, the not-so Affordable Care Act.  And I’m curious what would have happened had Congress had the benefit of the cost of this bill prior to that vote.  What would have happened had we known what the Congressional Budget Office said that we will have 800,000 – almost a million – fewer jobs because of Obamacare.  When we took that vote, Mr. Chairman, all we had were the advertised benefits.  But how come we didn’t have the Congressional Budget Office report of the cost?  That is just one example.  Almost a million fewer jobs because nobody bothered to conduct cost-benefit analysis.  It wasn’t required at the time. 

“Now the president claims that we ought to have this.  He issued an Executive Order, number 13563, saying government agencies ought to do this.  But then his Administration issues a veto threat on this bill.  I find that kind of interesting.  So the president says he wants to do it; he’s just not actually going to do it.

“The SEC mission, among other things, is to ensure that we help form capital.  You cannot have the benefits of capitalism, the free enterprise system, without capital - capital formation.  And so it is necessary to ensure that we look at the cost of what we are doing.  And apparently the SEC historically, not withstanding, they claim they are going to do it.  Most recently, we’ve had a unanimous decision of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals – unanimous decision – in the proxy access case that the SEC failed, and failed miserably, at ensuring cost-benefit analysis, also known as ‘kitchen table’ economics.  How are the costs of their rulemaking going to impact hard-working Americans? 

“It’s time to remedy this Mr. Chairman. Our constituents demand it.  Again, I urge the adoption of H.R. 1062."