- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Carol Browner, the former Clinton official whom President Obama tapped to help enact a cap-and-trade approach to global warming, will soon step down from her post as coordinator for energy and climate change policy, according to media reports.

The departure of Ms. Browner, who led the Environmental Protection Agency under former President Bill Clinton, comes a few months after Mr. Obama publicly acknowledged that comprehensive climate-change legislation is basically dead-on-arrival in the newly divided Congress.

News of her plans to step down was first reported by Politico, which said it’s not clear that she will be replaced.

Ms. Browner’s exit is part of a broad, public shakeup of top positions at the White House in the wake of the November elections that handed the House to Republicans. Mr. Obama has replaced his chief of staff, top economic advisers and is looking for a successor to longtime press secretary Robert Gibbs.

Many analysts say the moves are evidence the president is tacking to the center as he prepares for his own re-election ramp up in the coming months. Ms. Browner was a divisive figure among Republicans and even some Democrats, who criticized her as a “climate czar” with no accountability to Congress.

Cap-and-trade passed the House in 2009 but failed in the Senate, even as Democrats held a filibuster-proof majority during Mr. Obama’s first year in office. Its failure drew the ire of many environmental activists who accused the president of putting the issue on the back burner in favor of a health-care overhaul.

Ms. Browner’s public profile rose with the April 2010 BP oil spill, when she became a regular fixture on broadcast morning shows and sometimes helped Mr. Gibbs brief the press on the disaster.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide