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Bush Appoints Lobbyist To Oversee Product Safety?

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The question you have to ask after reading this is, “Is Michael E. Baroody the best guy for the job?”

Seriously. Shouldn’t we have the best people in these positions? The best and brightest? Instead, we get a lobbyist who’s been paid for years to oppose a government agency that he’s now going to run.

Here are his credentials…

He ascended into politics by writing speeches for Bob Dole in the 1970s. From 1981 to 1985, he served on President Reagan’s White House staff as deputy assistant to the President and director of public affairs. He spent a year in 1993 as the president of the Republican-oriented National Policy Forum before taking a post at NAM. […]

Baroody is the executive vice president of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). NAM is one of the nation’s largest trade groups and it opposes aggressive product safety regulation.

I’m sorry, but this doesn’t make any sense to me

• In 1988, as assistant secretary of Labor, he defended the Reagan administration’s record in protecting workers despite delays in issuing safety rules and efforts to weaken regulations.

• In 2000, he fought an ergonomics rule — put into place by the Clinton administration — that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration said was intended to prevent 300,000 workplace accidents and injuries.

• In 2001, speaking for NAM, he criticized a Supreme Court ruling rejecting arguments that the Environmental Protection Agency had acted unconstitutionally when it issued standards for limiting smog and soot.

And apparently, Bush has hired a bunch of lobbyists in health and safety positions recently. There’s Susan Dudley, who was nominated to run the generically titled Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (the deal with the EPA, workplace safety etc.), and Nicole Nason, who was nominated to run the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

How about that? Anybody know of any more like this that don’t get media coverage? Do tell.