The GOP is boycotting Obama’s pick for EPA chief, and Democrats are not happy about it

posted at 6:01 pm on May 9, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

On Thursday, Republican senators put the brakes on the confirmation of President Obama’s nominee for EPA chief, Gina McCarthy, saying that they were “completely unsatisfied” with the answers she was providing to their lines of questioning. Via Reuters:

The dispute over McCarthy stems from more than 1,000 written questions Republican senators asked her after her confirmation hearing – what Democrats say is a new record for the number of written questions asked of a nominee. …
David Vitter of Louisiana, the top Republican on the Environment Committee, told reporters their boycott was not related to McCarthy’s qualifications but to her refusal to answer questions about transparency within the agency.

All eight committee Republicans refused to participate in a scheduled vote on McCarthy, leaving her nomination in limbo and unable to advance to the next stage – a full Senate vote.

The White House responded with outrage. “There has been a historic level of obstructionism from the Senate on this nomination and others,” White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters aboard Air Force One.

Republican senators noted that Environment Committee Democrats, when in the minority, staged a similar boycott in 2003 of EPA nominee Michael Leavitt, forcing a vote to be rescheduled. Leavitt was ultimately confirmed.

Never you mind that Democrats staged a boycott of EPA nominee Michael Leavitt in 2003; the point, according to today’s Democrats, is that Republicans are merely up to their habitually spiteful and obstructionist antics and that McCarthy has already answered a record number of questions so just confirm her already, for pete’s sake.

Well, Given that McCarthy has been an assistant administrator at the EPA for years already — i.e., she’s been a major player in the Obama administration’s ongoing regulatory onslaught at an out-of-control, overzealous, and power-tripping independent agency — and that the agency has recently been under fire for some very serious transparency problems, isn’t it possible that she perhaps deserves the extra scrutiny?

Nah.

And yes, Sen. Boxer, Republicans do actually hate the environment, public health, and most especially women. Thanks for clearing that up.


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