President Biden has issued 99 executive orders as of mid-September. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
Biden issued more executive orders during his first year in office than any president since Gerald Ford
President Biden has issued nearly 100 executive orders, which will cost taxpayers up to $1.5 trillion, as the national debt nears $31 trillion, according to an expert.
Biden currently sits at 99 executive orders since taking office. His torrent pace came primarily within his first year, when he issued more than any president since the 1970s. Memos show at least one outside left-wing group financed by millions from liberal billionaire George Soros has influenced some of Biden’s orders and regulatory items.
A budgetary impact analysis, meanwhile, accompanies each order but does not include actual monetary costs. Instead, they contain vague language such as whether an order will have no impact, increase or decrease federal costs.
This makes it difficult to pinpoint the actual price tag of Biden’s actions. However, a federal budget expert told Fox News Digital that they estimate the costs to be north of $1 trillion.
“President Biden’s executive actions have cost taxpayers more than $1 trillion so far,” the Heritage Foundation’s Matthew Dickerson told Fox News Digital in an interview. “That’s taking into account the recent student loan executive action, which could cost up to $1 trillion.”
“But earlier this year, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office produced an analysis showing that less than ten of Biden’s earlier executive actions cost taxpayers already more than $500 billion,” Dickerson said.
“So it could be up to $1.5 trillion in cost to taxpayers just on executive actions, not legislation going through Congress and being signed into law and being debated,” Dickerson added. “It’s just pure executive actions taken by Biden costing taxpayers up to $1.5 trillion.”
Biden’s student loan forgiveness is a large chunk of the costs. In August, he announced plans to forgive $10,000 in student debt for borrowers making less than $125,000 annually, while Pell Grant recipients will receive $20,000 in handouts if their income falls below $125,000.
The student loan handout was initially estimated to cost taxpayers upwards of $500 billion, but a recent Penn Wharton Budget Model analysis shows it could reach upwards of $1 trillion.
Dickerson said the executive orders could also have an impact on inflation. “It would be significant because all of this new spending that the executive branch is doing, that Biden is doing by fiat,” he said.
“That means more money getting pumped out into the economy that’s being financed by the Federal Reserve, which means the printing presses are on, which means that it adds to the inflationary pressures,” Dickerson said. “The executive actions that Biden is doing are incredibly harmful for inflation because they are specifically aimed at reducing the supply of labor and goods and services.”
Inflation is even impacting the U.S. Army, which recently released guidance for soldiers as they fight inflation, including a suggestion that they take advantage of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, commonly known as food stamps.
Other Biden executive orders have expanded “the welfare state” and paid “people to stay out of the workforce,” Dickerson said.
“So that’s only exacerbating the 3.3 million worker shortage that we see in the economy,” he added.
Biden’s executive orders and regulatory items outpace predecessors
A vast majority of Biden’s executive orders came within his first year in office. During that time, he issued 77 orders — more than any president since Gerald Ford’s 1970s administration, an American Action Forum (AAF) study found.
The study said Biden’s executive orders and regulations had totaled more than $200 billion as of January 21 this year, far outpacing President Trump and Obama’s first year in office.
“With more than $201 billion in costs, the Biden era to-date far outpaces its predecessors, with more than three times the costs of Obama’s first year and nearly 40 times those of Trump’s,” AAF wrote in its January study. “The Biden total, however, only overtook Obama’s due to a massive Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) emission rule to put it over the edge in the final month.”
Trump issued 220 executive orders throughout his four-year presidency, while Obama had issued 276 over his eight years in the Oval Office.
The White House did not respond to a Fox News Digital request for comment.
Outside influence on Biden’s executive orders and regulatory items
An outside liberal group has played a role in shaping several executive orders and regulatory items, Fox News Digital previously reported.
Governing for Impact (GFI), a secretive group backed by nearly $13 million from Soros nonprofits, has quietly worked behind the scenes with the administration on policy.
“Open Society is proud to support Governing for Impact’s efforts to protect American workers, consumers, patients, students and the environment through policy reform,” Tom Perriello, executive director of Soros’ Open Society Foundations, told Fox News Digital in April.
GFI boasted in internal memos of implementing more than 20 of its regulatory agenda items as it works to reverse Trump-era deregulations by zeroing in on education, environmental, health care, housing and labor issues.
GFI’s site contains dozens of legal strategy memos for shaping executive orders and regulations in the educational, environmental, health care, housing and labor realms.
The memos generally do not identify their authors. Some show partnerships with outside groups such as The National Student League Defense Network, the Center for Law, Energy and the Environment at Berkeley Law School and the Economic Policy Institute.
“Many of the proposals on this site focus on how the new administration could unwind the previous administration’s harmful regulatory legacy, but GFI continues to take on new policy projects at all levels of government,” the site states.
GFI also created an internal slide deck and uploaded it to Prezi’s presentation site. The slide, which is now inaccessible, says GFI has implemented more than 20 of its federal proposals as of 2021.
Multiple federal officials appear in the internal slide as a part of its “listening tour,” including Sharon Block, Biden’s former top regulation review chief. Block served as administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), a division of the Office of Management and Budget, from the start of Biden’s presidency until February of this year.
In addition to Block, GFI highlights other top federal officials as part of its “listening tour.” Senior DOJ official Joel McElvain, who left his post in 2018 in protest of the Trump administration’s stance on the Affordable Care Act, but returned in 2021, appears in the slide.
It also shows Raj Nayak, assistant secretary at the Labor Department, Sabeel Rahman, senior counselor of OIRA, Narayan Subramanian, an Energy Department legal advisor, and Maggie Thomas, who Biden picked as chief of staff in the Office of Domestic Climate Policy.
GFI has prepared legal policy memos for at least ten federal departments and agencies, the slide shows. They also produced ten administrative law primers as of 2021.