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Democrats renew push for Obama EPA pick Gina McCarthy

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After Senate Republicans last week blocked a vote on Gina McCarthy’s nomination to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Democrats plan to try again Thursday.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, California Democrat and chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, sent a brief letter to her GOP counterpart, Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, and urged him and his fellow Republicans to give the nominee an up-or-down vote.

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Energy and Environment

“Gina is a highly qualified nominee. She has a demonstrated record of working with Republicans and Democrats. … We need her strong, bipartisan, common-sense approach to lead the EPA,” Mrs. Boxer said in her letter.

Mrs. McCarthy, President Obama’s pick to head the controversial agency and spearhead his climate-change agenda in a second term, faces an uncertain future in the Senate. Her nomination was scheduled to come to a vote last week in committee, but Republicans boycotted the hearing.

Mr. Vitter, along with other Republicans, say they have unanswered questions about EPA transparency and the use of secondary email accounts under pseudonyms.

Former Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, for example, has come under fire for her email account under the name “Richard Windsor.”

Other Republicans criticize Mrs. McCarthy — and the EPA as a whole — for what they call an anti-fossil-fuels agenda and the use of questionable science to demonize coal, oil and natural gas.

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About the Author
Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.

Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.

He can be reached at

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