Industry Lobbyists Are Preparing for a Pro-Business Congress

Jan 5, 2017

The construction industry can benefit greatly if Republicans undo parts of the Obama legacy.

For eight years the liberal agenda of President Obama has shaped national policy. Congress has been gridlocked and has passed little legislation of consequence, with the notable exception of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Most of the liberal initiatives have been enacted by executive decree.

Now that both houses of Congress are controlled by Republicans and the President is, nominally, a Republican, most analysts, and Wall Street, expect to see pro-business legislation, unshackled from excessive liberal concern for issues such as the environment and health care, become law.

Industry lobbyists are preparing, as Rebecca Ballhaus notes in an article in the The Wall Street Journal, to go on the offensive after years playing legislative defense. There is a tentative sense of optimism among industry leaders, including those in construction, that there will finally be a reprieve from Congressional gridlock.

“Among policy areas back on the table are immigration, health care, the tax code, infrastructure and Wall Street regulations—all top issues on which corporations lobby Congress and the White House.” The assumption is that Washington will now be receptive to legislation that creates new jobs in mainline industries such as construction and energy production.

We will know in a few months whether the present pro-business euphoria is well founded. Much depends upon the new President, who has proven to be unpredictable.

Reasonable people realize that concerns about the environment and workers’ rights cannot be completely overlooked as the nation’s industrial sectors begin to operate with less governmental interference. But there is a balance that must be maintained that allows industry to flourish.

That is especially true in the construction industry. For example, rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure benefits everyone. Contractors should not have to wait through five years or more of regulatory hearings and regulation revisions before they begin work on roads, bridges, dams and other basic infrastructure projects that stimulate the economy by creating thousands of good paying jobs.


Companies Gear up for Activist Congress, Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 28, 2016.