Once upon a time, lobbyists were told they would have no place in the Obama administration. Transparency would put an end to business as usual in Washington. Alas, there’s no happy ending to this fairy tale. Lobbyists call the shots in this administration.
Republicans on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, including Rep. Darrell E. Issa of California, the panel’s chairman, have joined Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana in ordering the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to hand over documents and emails regarding the cozy association between the agency and the Natural Resources Defense Council. “It appears that [the resources council]’s unprecedented access to high-level EPA officials,” the legislators wrote, “allowed it to influence EPA policy decisions and achieve its own private agenda. Such collusive activities provide the [council], and their financial backers, with an inappropriate opportunity to wield the broad powers of the executive branch. “
The Energy & Environment Legal Institute, in a report of its investigation, provides a clear trail of emails revealing the revolving door between senior EPA officials and radical environmentalists.