As Election Day nears, so too does the day when Republicans will be able to put Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson on the hot seat.
All it will take for Jackson to be questioned, ridiculed and sound-bited into an ineffective administrator will be a Republican takeover of one house of Congress. Politico reports that Jackson is near the top of the list of administration officials that Republicans want a piece of. The Politico story quotes a former staffer on the House Energy and Commerce Committee as saying, “I think she’ll be very much in demand on the Hill, at times not of her choosing. It will diminish her free time, shall we say.”
Calling administration officials before Senate or House committees for questioning is just part of politics when Congress and the executive branch are not controlled by the same party. After the Democratic takeover of the House of Representatives and Senate in 2006, it was General David Petraeus who was not only called before Congress, but who was also controversially attacked in a full-page New York Times advertisement paid for by MoveOn.org. Clearly that didn’t work, and now all mention of the campaign has been erased from the liberal organization’s website.
As for Jackson, assuming Republicans take control of one or both houses, it will be interesting to see how she handles herself in front of congressional committees. Like Petraeus, she will be afforded the opportunity to give her side of things. She will have the opportunity to answer the predictable set of accusations about the science behind climate change, the administration’s so-called anti-business agenda, and the claims that the EPA is over-reaching with its regulation of the energy industry.
Many on the left seem concerned about what will happen after the midterm elections, but they should remember that Petraeus did so well under political fire that he is now approaching hero status in the political and military arenas.
Jackson will soon have a similar opportunity, and while she will not oversee any actual combat, she will have an opportunity to make her argument, and perhaps emerge victorious.