Ron Paul's 40,000 new laws

U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Lake Jackson, made a stop at Texas A&M University on April 10, 2012, while campaigning for president.

In an April 10, 2012, speech at Texas A&M University, Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul, the U.S. House member from Lake Jackson, said the nation is moving in the wrong direction, adding that the country has too many laws. "Just on Jan. 1 of this year, there were 40,000 new laws put on the books in one day," Paul said.

Not quite, we determined.

The Congressional Record of Jan. 3, 2012 says that in the previous 12 months, about 80 bills had become federal law.

And what of new state laws?

According to StateScape, a research firm in Alexandria, Va., state legislatures enacted 18,562 bills, excluding non-statutory resolutions, through all of 2011. Also, other experts reminded us that not all measures take effect at the start of a year.

Paul also aired the 40,000 figure in his April 26, 2012, speech at the University of Texas, seemingly indicating he believes the laws are all federal laws.

"I say we have way too many laws on the books. First, along with the National Defense Authorization Act on January first, there were forty thousand new laws placed on our books," Paul said. "Now, what I would like to be is the first president to get rid of forty thousand useless laws." (President Barack Obama signed the defense act into law on Jan. 5, 2012.)

We rated Paul’s claim at Texas A&M as False. See our full check to the right.



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