Public Rejects GOP Push to Eliminate EPA

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Once again Republicans are proving to be out of step with the American people. This time calls by leading Republicans to dismantle the Environmental Protection Agency have met with resistance by two-thirds of Americans, according to a recent survey.

In a bid for some attention to his presidential pretensions, late last month former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich called on Congress to dismantle the EPA. Calling the agency "the tool of ideologues," the deposed former House Speaker accused it of being responsible for the prolonged economic crisis.

Nowhere in his remarks did Gingrich point to the role of Wall Street speculators or weakened government oversight in sparking the financial collapse that lay at the heart of this recession.

Nor did Gingrich point the finger at corporations that have systematically moved good manufacturing jobs move overseas over the last two decades or led the way in eroding the earning power of working families as the main culprits who have ensured the depth and length of the Great Recession.

Instead, Gingrich and congressional Republicans want to replace the EPA with "a bureaucracy that would cater to polluters," Pete Altman of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).

Gingrich made his demand to dismantle the EPA in conjunction with a new push by congressional Republicans to follow through with similar legislation.

New polling data about American attitudes toward the EPA and to environmental regulation generally reveals, however, that Gingrich and congressional Republicans are again far outside the mainstream of public opinion.

According to the Graham Hueber, senior project manager at Opinion Research Center International, a supermajority of Americans, including more than six in 10 Republicans, disagree with Gingrich's demand.

"The poll findings reflect strong bipartisan support both for the EPA in general and also for its playing a vigorous role in fighting air pollution," Hueber announced on a teleconference with reporters Feb. 2. He noted that the polling data was collected just days after Gingrich made his  eyebrow-raising statement.

"There is no evidence in the polling data to suggest that Americans have any appetite for dismantling an agency that they see as protecting the health of themselves and their families," he added.

According to Hueber, 67 percent of Americans reject Gringich's demand to abolish the EPA, including 61 percent of Republicans. Sixty-three percent want the EPA to do more to protect air and water from polluters. Less than three in 10 Americans think it already does too much. And even fewer Americans, about 18 percent, want Congress to follow the Republican agenda and block the EPA's active role in updating pollution regulations.

"Americans prefer to protect the health of their families over allowing more pollution from corporations," said Altman, climate campaign director for the NRDC, the organization that sponsored the survey.

"The bottom line is clear: Democrats, Republicans and Independents want politicians to protect the health of America's children rather than the profit-driven agenda of big polluters," he explained. "People get that the EPA is dedicated to protecting public health and want Congress to let the agency do its job."

The Republican Party's push to dismantle the EPA and to block its role in regulating pollution emissions, including carbon emissions, "puts our health at risk," added Brenda Afzal, Health Care Without Harm's climate policy coordinator.

Afzal, who is also a registered nurse, explained, "Leading health organizations and experts consider carbon dioxide pollution to be a wide-ranging threat to public health."

The EPA should retain its authority to control the air pollution that has caused large increases in asthma and other respiratory disease among American children, she stated.

"Our health should not suffer so that members of Congress can put corporate profits ahead of the public's health," she said.

This show of strong public support for the EPA and its role in regulating pollution comes the same week the EPA will kick off the first in a series of listneing carbon emissions that cause global warming and an array of public health problems.

Photo by net_efekt, cc by 2.0

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  • This does not mean that republicans aren't inline with america, it means that the cover up isn't allowing america to know what is going on. That is why they say statments like "Our health should not suffer so that members of Congress can put corporate profits ahead of the public's health," They are not wanting health to suffer for more money. That is totally not their point. It is about the corruption, but that part, or anything about what they are really trying to do, is not mentioned in this report, showing the biasness that the american people have to put up with. They are not voting for them because they know the EPA is good, they are voting for them because they are kept in the dark about the underlying method of madness behind everything. If they were filled in with the truth, and reality, they would vote different.

    Posted by Jason W., 07/01/2011 3:44pm (6 years ago)

  • The American people do not understand that EPA should not be making such decisions concerning laws about so called Carbon GASES, THE CONGRESS SHOULD . I REALIZE THE LIBERALS GAVE EPA THE OK TO LEGISLATE
    AND THIS PRESIDENT TOKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS AS HAVE OTHER PRESIDENTS, BUT THAT IN ITSELF IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL AND SHOULD BE REPEALED , THEY, EPA, WERE NOT ELECTED TO MAKE SUCH DECISIONS. AFTER THEY REPEAL THAT REG THEN THEY SHOULD ABOLISH THE EPA. I'M QUITE SURE YOU DID NOT EXPLAIN THAT IN YOUR INTERNATIONAL POLL!!!

    Posted by Terry MCgovern, 02/03/2011 1:20pm (7 years ago)

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