How Swiftly Could Romney Gut Federal Environmental Protections?

John M. Broder looks at the obstacles that stand in the way of Mitt Romney's campaign pledge to “take a weed whacker” to a variety of federal pollution and public health rules.
October 9, 2012, 9am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Republicans, in general, and under the leadership of their standard bearer Mitt Romney, have targeted a slew of federal regulations for removal, far beyond those passed under the current president. 

According to Broder, "[Romney] has pledged to reverse a half-dozen major Environmental Protection Agency pollution and public health rules, to swiftly approve the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, to rewrite the ambitious new vehicle fuel efficiency standards and to open untouched coastal and wilderness areas to oil and gas exploration." 

"But as President Obama learned in his first years in office as he tried to undo some of his predecessor's industry-friendly energy and environmental policies, such promises are easier to make than keep. They require the rewriting of decades-old laws, the assent of a balky Congress, favorable rulings from courts and a bureaucracy that works smoothly and swiftly to advance a president's goals. That is a steep hill in today's Washington."

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Published on Saturday, October 6, 2012 in The New York Times
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