Those familiar with the hard work done by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) are likely to agree that this small agency with a big responsibility for implementing U.S. sanctions deserves more money and staff. While various reports have highlighted the office’s lack of resources, most of the attention to date has focused on the staffing of sanctions programs for key national security priorities such as Iran and North Korea.
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When most people think about regulations, they think about health, safety, and environmental rules. As part of their efforts to deregulate in these areas, the House of Representatives has passed sweeping bills that would completely transform the process that every federal agency uses to issue regulations: the Regulatory Accountability Act and the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act.
It may not feel like it, but the United States is well into the sixteenth year of two national emergencies. President Bush declared the first emergency on September 14, 2001, in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. This proclamation triggered statutory provisions that gave the President broad authority to increase the size and scope of the military, apportion certain defense funds as he saw fit, and recall retired military forces to active duty.