President Obama on Monday denied conservative arguments that he's a "big government, crazy liberal," and said instead he has welcomed regulatory reform during his time in office.
Responding to a question from GOP Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan during a National Governors Association luncheon, he asked the governors to send the White House a list of regulations that they find "most illogical and frustrating."
"I don't believe in regulations for regulations sake," he told the governors. "[The idea that] somehow that I get a kick out of big government, is simply not the case."
"It's not like I get up every morning and say, 'How can I add more work for me?'" he said. "If there's something to stop doing or do better, we should change it."
While Obama said he would not pledge to jettison every regulation they disagree with, he promised to take a look at those the governors say don't make sense or outdated.
Republican governors may not agree with some regulations, he said, such as new environmental rules his administration has imposed, but many of those are "saving a lot of lives keeping people out of the hospital" and are "making a big difference."
He also said his administration has instituted cost-benefit analyses on all of the regulations he has implemented during his time in office, a process he said was thought of as a "conservative idea" when he was growing up in the 1980s.
"We have been very stringent and very tight and our numbers all check out," he said. "Even on some of the big regulations that you don't like."
"For those of you who think I'm just a big government, crazy liberal, we crunch some numbers around here. We take it very seriously."