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By Mangosuthu Buthelezi
Memories of a long brotherhood tempered in common struggle
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Environment And Public Works Committee
Gina McCarthy's already bumpy road to becoming Environmental Protection Agency administrator took another detour Thursday morning when Senate Republicans boycotted a committee vote on her nomination, blocking it for now.
Senate hearings, even confirmation hearings, don't always live up to their billing (except in the movies). Not every committee can deliver Watergate-era theatrics, either from the panel of senators or in a retort from the witness table, as in Joseph Welch's famous question to Joe McCarthy: "Have you no sense of decency?"
President Obama's pick to be the next chief of the Environmental Protection Agency told Congress on Thursday that she never has used private emails or instant-messaging to try to avoid open-records laws, and promised to crack down on those within the agency who do.
Two of President Barack Obama's top appointees to oversee energy and pollution policy will take center stage this week at Senate confirmation hearings that should add new detail about the administration's second-term regulatory agenda.
Republicans are raising questions about the timing and costs of President Obama's decision to bypass Congress and designate five additional national monuments, coming as it does amid dire warnings of the most recent round of budget cuts, including the National Park Service.
President Obama is not finding many allies in his latest call for bipartisan cooperation on new infrastructure spending and tax breaks, and even Democrats say nothing will get done in the two months before congressional elections.