Conservatives are expecting President Joe Biden to increase his use of executive orders if Democrats lose control of Congress in the midterms.
Some advocates therefore plan to use a tactic left-leaning advocates have employed — bypassing Congress by relying on a Federal Register public comment process that can slow down an order or even defeat it by popular backlash, the Washington Examiner reported Thursday.
"What I hear so much while I'm on the road is, 'What can we do to impact the Biden regime?'" Heritage Action Executive Director Jessica Anderson told the Examiner.
"There's a lot of frustration where people feel like they're calling a member of Congress and nothing happens because Republicans don't have control."
The 1946 Administrative Procedures Act includes requirements for publishing notices of proposed and final rule-making in the Federal Register — the U.S. government's daily journal — and provides opportunities for the public to comment.
"We should have been doing this a long time ago," Anderson told the Examiner. "It's really significant, and we're at a turning point now where voters can weigh in and hopefully make a difference."
Biden has used executive orders to try to implement federal mask and vaccine mandates and the Securities and Exchange Commission's climate disclosure rule, the SEC's proposed rule that would compel companies to disclose climate-related risks, which is up for public comment through June 17. Heritage has issued a toolkit and a link to submit comments.
Biden has also used the tactic for a pro-transgender interpretation of Title IX, which prohibits sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity) discrimination in education programs that receive federal financial assistance.
Public comments aren't being accepted for the pro-transgender interpretation of Title IX, but efforts to solicit and educate voters on how to weigh in are on the Federal Register.
Anderson's group used the tactic last summer after the Department of Education proposed plans to fund grants for programs based on critical race theory.
Heritage pushed a toolkit and sent activists to the Federal Register, the Examiner reported.
The Education Department walked back its plans after more than 35,000 public comments were sent in on the proposed rule.
Proposed Occupational Safety and Health Administration rules requiring vaccine mandates among private employers also prompted such a response, with more than 68,000 mostly negative comments being submitted before the courts struck down the rule.
The federal mask mandate was struck down, in part, because it circumvented the required comment period for federal rule-making. The administration also reduced the typical two-month comment process to just one month for proposed rules regarding charter schools.
"By us engaging more forcefully and strategically in their rule-making process, we'll be in the position to point out when the Biden administration is trying to circumvent and prevent Americans from weighing in," Anderson told the Examiner.
During an appearance on ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" on Wednesday night, Biden was asked about the possibility of issuing an executive order on gun control.
"I have issued executive orders within the power of the presidency to be able to deal with everything having to do with guns … all of the things that are within my power," Biden said.
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