I saw this headline over the weekend: Study: EPA influence over states grows.  According to a new study, the EPA’s influence over state environmental policy has grown dramatically during the Obama presidency.  It found that the EPA had rejected state’s policies for complying with federal regulations – like the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act – almost eight times more often in Obama’s first term than in Bush’s second term and almost as many times as in both of Bush’s terms and Clinton’s last term combined.  And there were 19 federal takeovers during Obama’s first term.  That only happened once under Bush.  There’s a similar pattern in “Sue and Settle” cases with a huge increase that has produced an additional $13 billion in regulatory costs.

All this matters because it reduces states’ abilities to comply with regulations in  ways that work best given their unique circumstances.  It quashes creativity.  It imposes from above rather than letting states come up with their own solutions.  And the solutions imposed by the EPA are often significantly more expensive, meaning that states’ taxpayers are faced with a higher financial burden.

It fits the pattern, though – increasing federal control of environmental policy, health care, education