In the past six months, President Barack Obama attended 106 re-
election fundraisers -- and zero meetings with his jobs council.
With America's unemployment rate above 8 percent for 41 straight
months and counting, he should focus more on learning how to
encourage the creation of jobs and less on saving his own.
Despite doubts and disbelief by some Democrats, job creators --
both big and small -- tell me that excessive and overly burdensome
regulations are an obstacle to hiring more workers and growing the
economy. In a recent National Federation of Independent Business
survey, small-business owners named "taxes" and "government
regulation and red tape" among the most serious problems they face.
Even the president has talked about how excessive regulation
hurts job creation, saying that, sometimes, rules "have gotten out
of balance, placing unreasonable burdens on business -- burdens that
have stifled innovation and have had a chilling effect on growth and
jobs." But talk is about all he has done to address the problem.
Instead of reducing these roadblocks to recovery, Obama has
increased them. He claims he has "approved fewer regulations" than
his predecessor, but the numbers tell a different story.
In its first three years, the Obama administration created 120
new major regulations that cost Americans more than $46 billion
every year. That's more than four times the number and five times
the cost of major regulations created by the Bush administration
over its first three years. Imagine what this burden could look like
after a second Obama term.
The Small Business Administration estimates that current
regulations already cost $1.75 trillion every year and add $10,585
in overhead per employee. In a recent cover story titled "Over-
regulated America," the Economist magazine noted that, given the
increase in regulations, "It's a wonder the jobless rate isn't even
higher than it is." As Tyson Foods Senior Vice President Ken Kimbro
told me during a jobs conference I hosted in Little Rock, Ark., last
fall, "[I]t seems like [regulators] turn a blind eye to the
unintended consequences" of regulations and their effect on "the
jobs that support everything that we do."
The House is listening to job creators. Instead of joining us,
Obama turned up the attacks, saying our attempts to weed out
excessive and overly burdensome regulations mean we want "dirtier
air" and "dirtier water." That's nonsense. As the father of two
young children, I recognize the importance of protecting our
environment and keeping our food safe and our air clean. Reasonable
government regulation ensures the health and safety of our families
and communities. …