The Congressional Review Act: Striking a New Balance between Congressional Control and Regulatory Initiative – The Fate of the Leveraged Lending Guidance at Issue

November 01, 2017

After more than two decades in obscurity, the Congressional Review Act (CRA) has now emerged as a major factor in the relationship between the U.S. Congress and the regulatory agencies.

The CRA was enacted in 1996 as part of Speaker Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America.” It was intended to provide a relatively easy-to-exercise method to check administrative action that was not consistent with the desire of Congress. The CRA allows the two houses of Congress to void an agency rule by passing a joint resolution of disapproval by a majority vote of each house followed by signature of the President. The CRA requires an agency to submit actions that qualify as a “rule” to the both houses and to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) before the rule can take effect. If a rule is disapproved under the CRA, the relevant agency is prohibited from issuing a new rule that is substantially the same unless expressly authorized by subsequent legislation.

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