The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) recently voted to send President Obama's nomination of Gina McCarthy to head the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to the full Senate. Gina McCarthy has spent her entire career working across the aisle to protect our environment and defend public health. She's one of the most qualified EPA nominees to come before the Senate, and she deserves a swift bipartisan confirmation vote.
Gina McCarthy is extremely well qualified to serve at the helm of the EPA, and has been widely praised as a proven problem solver who has worked across party lines. She has worked closely with environmental advocates and industry leaders alike while earning trust from both sides of the aisle.
She's also served under Republican and Democratic administrations for over 25 years, including as Governor Romney's energy and climate adviser in Massachusetts. This was the reason that Republicans and Democrats easily confirmed her by a voice vote to head the Clean Air division of the EPA in 2009, where she has made extraordinary progress protecting our air quality.
The stakes are too high to let corporate polluters or their allies in Congress hinder the EPA's ability to do its job. The EPA is the cop on the beat in charge of protecting the air we breathe and the water we drink. All across the country, families are counting on the EPA to guard against dangerous pollution in our air and water and toxic chemicals in our homes, food and everyday products.
It's already been nearly three months since President Obama nominated Gina McCarthy to be our next EPA administrator. Playing partisan political games or further delaying her confirmation would fly in the face of the work Republicans have done over the years to protect our environment.
After all, Theodore Roosevelt became the first president to make major advances in preserving our land and wildlife, protecting an estimated 230 million acres of public land that went to creating national parks, monuments, bird reservations, national forests, and game preservations. Richard Nixon created the EPA itself by executive order, and Ronald Reagan helped bring about the Montreal Protocol, which dramatically reduced ozone-depleting chemicals. George H. W. Bush signed amendments to the Clean Air Act that are still being praised today.
Now that Gina McCarthy's nomination is before the full Senate, it's time for Republicans and Democrats to come together and do what is right by confirming her as EPA Administrator, so she can get to work protecting the environment and public health.