Leavitt Held Hostage

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), October 15, 2003 | Go to article overview

Leavitt Held Hostage


Byline: THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee today will once more consider the nomination of Mike Leavitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency. Considering the politics already in play, Republicans must be prepared to contend as hard as necessary to get his nomination to the floor.

By right, Mr. Leavitt's name should already be there. He was nominated by Mr. Bush on Aug. 11, and his first hearing was scheduled for Sept. 18. That hearing was postponed at the request of Democrats. After the Sept. 23 hearing, the nomination was scheduled for a committee mark up on October 1. Yet, rather than allow his nomination to go to the floor (one which most lawmakers say would be easily approved), Democrats denied the nomination a vote and defied the democratic process by boycotting the hearing. Thus was the nomination held hostage to Democratic ambitions.

Mr. Leavitt's fitness to serve is not in question. His decade-long tenure as governor of Utah testifies to his administrative ability. In 1999, Governing magazine proclaimed Mr. Leavitt "Public Official of the Year." The clear skies over the Grand Canyon and the clear streams running through the state speak to his environmental stewardship.

Nor is Mr. …

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