Sep 17, 2014 - 3:30pm

Americans Say We're Overregulated

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Americans Say We're Overregulated
Americans Say We're Overregulated

A Gallup poll finds that the percentage of Americans who say there is too much regulation is nearly double that of those who say businesses are regulated just the right amount: 

Less than one quarter of Americans (22%) say there is too little government regulation of business and industry, while about half (49%) say there is too much regulation. An additional 27% say the level of regulation is about right. These attitudes have been consistent over the past five years. Prior to that, the percentage who said there was too much regulation rose between 2008 and 2010.

Gallup reports that the majority-negative opinion on regulation in the U.S. coincides with an overall dim view of the federal government.

This chart from the George Washington University Regulatory Studies Center showing the growing number of pages of regulations explains part of this attitude.

Federal regulators aren’t letting up. In the name of reducing carbon emissions, EPA wants to remove coal from our energy mix, making the electrical grid less reliable. At the same time, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers want to expand their authority over bodies of water beyond the scope of the Clean Water Act (CWA).

Regulations need to be well-thought out, take into account public and stakeholder feedback, and show that the benefits will outweigh the costs. If not, then time and resources will be wasted, needed projects and investments will be blocked, and public frustration will continue to grow.

Here are nine charts to help you better understand federal regulations. And read our previous posts on regulations choking business here, here, and here

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About the Author

About the Author

Sheryll Poe is a former senior writer at the U.S. Chamber, who covered public policies affecting businesses including the three "T's" - transportation, trade and taxes.