RE: Oppose the Nomination of Andrew Wheeler for EPA Deputy Administrator

Dear Senator,

The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) works to turn environmental values into national priorities.  Each year, LCV publishes the National Environmental Scorecard, which details the voting records of members of Congress on environmental legislation.  The Scorecard is distributed to LCV members, concerned voters nationwide, and the media.

LCV urges you to oppose the nomination of Andrew Wheeler for Deputy Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

The mission of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment, but Andrew Wheeler has dedicated his career to weakening environmental protections, serving as a lobbyist for numerous fossil fuel clients, including one of our country’s biggest polluters, Murray Energy. Andrew Wheeler’s inherent conflicts of interest from his long history of ties to the fossil fuel industry make him an entirely inappropriate choice for EPA’s number two leadership role.

Throughout his career, Andrew Wheeler has openly opposed climate protections. While serving as a top aide to climate change denier Senator Inhofe on the Environment and Public Works Committee, Wheeler worked to pass the reckless “Clear Skies Act,” which would have undermined the Clean Air Act and dangerously delayed critical improvements in our air quality. This bill failed in committee due to bipartisan opposition.

Wheeler’s nomination also deserves heightened scrutiny given the multiple and ongoing ethical scandals currently embroiling EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. Considering Pruitt’s myriad unethical decisions, behavior and serious conflicts of interest, the choice for EPA’s deputy administrator could not be more critical. Wheeler did not get a standalone hearing, where his ties to the fossil fuel industry could have been properly vetted. Instead, his hearing was with climate change denier Kathleen Harnett White, who created a major distraction with her conspiracy theories and lack of understanding of science.

For these reasons, LCV urges you to oppose the nomination of Andrew Wheeler for Deputy Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. We will strongly consider including this vote in the 2018 Scorecard. If you need more information, please call my office at (202) 785-8683 and ask to speak with a member of our government relations team.

 

Sincerely,

Gene Karpinski

President

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