by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
President Trump’s deregulatory agenda continued in 2018, although the pace of the deregulation has slipped slightly when compared to his first year in office, according to a new analysis by a D.C.-based think tank.
Those findings were based on the number of pages included in the Federal Register at the year’s end, which in 2018 topped out at 68,082. The register is the daily journal of the federal government, which in addition to containing executive orders and proclamations also holds all new federal agency regulations as well as proposed rules.
While the number of pages in the register isn’t an exact measurement tool for deregulation, it can be a starting point for making approximations. As the report from the Competitive Enterprise Institute noted, “Washington doesn’t go out of its way to honestly measure itself and disclose regulatory impact.”
The 68,082 mark shows a slight uptick from 2017’s tally of 61,308, which was the lowest page count since 1993.
As a point of comparison, in the last two years of President Barack Obama’s administration, the number of pages in the register totaled 80,260 in 2015 and 95,894 in 2016.
Last October, the president boasted of the overall efforts, and has often times linked it to the economy’s strong performance of late.
“We have set a record on killing regulations,” Trump said. “No administration has knocked out as many as us, and we have a long way to go.”