President Obama vows to fight tooth and nail for his $447B jobs program, traveling to every corner of the land to pitch the economic recovery plan. We’ll see how much fight is in the president, especially in the aftermath of the administration’s big cave on ozone standards.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce “loudly applauded” Obama’s decision to have the Environmental Protection Agency withdraw its ozone rules. It sees the beginning of a beautiful new relationship with Team Obama, hoping the Sept. 2 announcement is a “springboard to real, meaningful action to reform the regulatory process.”
The Chamber rightly predicted a fierce backlash from the environmental community. On cue, the Union of Concerned Scientists today sent supporters an image of a White House with the word “science” under it. A question mark is superimposed over the picture.
The group wants people to share that image on the White House’s Facebook page with a message of disappointment. The idea, according to USC national field organizer Michael Halpern, is “to urge the president not to let science take a back seat at the White House.”
The president’s ozone ruling undercuts the Clean Air Act and thwarts the actions of the EPA and its very capable leader Lisa Jackson who is trying to do her job.
Halpern wonders if the decision was an isolated incident. The EPA is in the process of drawing up rules on toxic mercury and global warming. The UCS asks: “Will the president let politics trump public health again.”
That question will become very pertinent if global warming doubter Rick Perry becomes the Republican presidential candidate. Will Obama move to out-Perry Rick? Stay tuned.
One thing for sure: Obama won’t ever be called “Ozone Man,” the tag that President Bush 1 put on Al Gore, winner of the Nobel Prize for his work on global warming. Another sure thing: Ozone Man would not have caved on the EPA's ozone rules.