On September 22, 2011, Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL), Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, held a hearing with one witness, the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lisa P. Jackson, on regulatory reform. At the hearing Stearns predicted that President Obama would not push through controversial environmental regulations before the 2012 election. As Stearns stated then, "issuing such a rule would cause [Obama] severe electoral problems in the next election." Today, the Washington Times is running a story* on Obama halting U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations for a "political split second" before tomorrow's election and then imposing massive coal regulations after the election.
As chairman of the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee, Stearns held a hearing on the EPA's plans to impose severe regulations on coal development, transportation, and use that would harm the coal industry, cost thousands of jobs, and limit domestic energy production. In response to Stearns' oversight and the lack of economic growth and job creation, the Obama Administration and the EPA withdrew its regulatory plan. With the election ending tomorrow, the White House and the EPA are preparing anti-coal regulations that are expected to be released at the end of November.
Added Stearns, "According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, regulations cost American taxpayers and businesses $1.8 trillion each year. The looming regulatory burdens at the center of President Obama's agenda contribute toward the broad uncertainty that prevents economic growth and job creation. I'm proud of my role in exposing the cost of these regulatory schemes, but I cannot be heartened by my prescient prediction that the 2012 election only would delay temporarily these new coal regulations."