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Hearing of the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee - EPA Enforcement Priorities and Practices


Location: Washington, DC

Congressman Bobby L. Rush (D-IL) made the following statement this morning during the opening of a Subcommittee on Energy and Power hearing on EPA Enforcement Priorities and Practices. Rush, the ranking Democratic member of the subcommittee, blasts those who he says are trying to dismantle the EPA and to undo progress made in cleaning up the environment:

Mr. Chairman, since the beginning of the 112th Congress, by my count we have had over 30 Energy & Power subcommittee and joint subcommittee hearings.

We have held over a dozen subcommittee and full committee markups, and we have had nine bills that originated from this subcommittee that have been voted on by the full House.

Yet from all of that time and effort, this subcommittee has produced exactly one bill, let me repeat: exactly one bill, the Pipeline Safety Reauthorization Act, that has actually become law.

Mr. Chairman, while attacks on the EPA and the Clean Air Act may appease some of the more extreme constituencies that the majority side represents, most Americans would like to see us working in a bipartisan manner to address critical issues, such as access to jobs, clean air, and clean water, less dependence on foreign oil, enhanced energy efficiency measures, and an increased reliance on the cleaner and renewable energy sources of the future.

And yet, here we are again, putting on a dog and pony show for the cameras, holding a hearing basically designed to highlight the partial statement of a single former EPA staffer, who no longer even works for the agency.

While today's hearing may provide my Republican colleagues with yet another opportunity to try and embarrass the Obama Administration, we all know that absolutely nothing, not a single constructive policy, will come out of today's hearing.

And with all due respect to the witnesses who will be testifying here today, I believe that all of our time would be better served by working in a bipartisan way to enact policy that may someday actually move this country's energy policy forward.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and with that I yield the balance of my time to my friend from Texas, Mr. Green.

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