Call of the Day: Oppose Rollbacks of Consumer Protections

The Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017, aka RAA (HR 5 in the House, S.951 in the Senate) would change long-standing rules on how federal agencies regulate everything from food safety to toxic chemicals to equipment failure at nuclear power plants—things that keep us all safe.

The RAA would add layer upon layer of complication to creating any new rule, no matter how important to public health or safety, including:

  • Require agencies to adopt the regulations that are cheapest for corporations, not the ones that would maximize benefits for the American public.
  • Force agencies to comply with 53 new rules before establishing any new regulation, including a complex analysis of alternative proposals (allowing special interests to propose impractical options that must then be rigorously analyzed). 
  • Force federal agencies to hold trial-like hearings for new regulations.  These “adversarial hearings” — a discredited form of rule-making that allows corporations to cross-examine ‘witnesses’ — have led to enormous regulatory delay and dysfunction. 
  • Impose a gag order for proposed regulations so agencies can’t make any public statement about the proposed rules, even against wildly inaccurate claims; and 
  • Politicize currently independent commissions by subjecting them to White House interference.

RAA could lead to massive attacks on consumer protections in every area of life.  It's the worst bill you've never heard of.  And it's already passed the House, and will come to a vote in the full Senate soon.

WHO TO CALL:

Senator Bill Cassidy - in DC at (202) 224-5824, and in Metairie at (504) 838-0130.

Senator John Kennedy - in DC at (202) 224-4623, and in Monroe at (318) 361-1489.

Reminders: Identify where you're calling from (town and zip code is fine) so they know you're an actual constituent.  Be concise - the office will get through more calls that way.  Be polite and don't argue with the staffer - they don't set policy.  If you get a voicemail, then leave a message.  And if you get a busy signal -- call back later!

Sample script -

Hi, my name is [Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from].  I don't need a response. 

I'm calling to let Senator [NAME] know that I want him to OPPOSE S.951 Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017 (RAA).  I’m deeply concerned about politicizing regulations.  Clean air and clean water shouldn’t depend on who is in the White House.

Thank you for your time, and for your hard work answering the phones.

This call is courtesy of Indivisible Metairie.