The Obama White House was under pressure from the business lobby to adopt weaker ozone standards, and on Friday, officials agreed. And while industries were pleased by the announcement, the move didn’t exactly buy a lot of goodwill.
“I do not have a sense of the administration’s philosophy here or where or how they determine to draw a line between economic impacts versus outside organizational pressures,” said R. Bruce Josten, the top lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which represents the nation’s businesses.
The Chamber heaped praise on the White House for its ozone decision. But Josten, who said he is in frequent contact with White House Chief of Staff William Daley and other top officials, said the administration “still has a heavy hand” with hundreds of regulations in the pipeline, from those affecting the environment to labor and capital markets.
As Jared Bernstein responded, “[B]elieve me, even if the White House withdrew all of those regs from the pipeline, they’d still face the same opposition. You can’t please ’em, so you might as well just focus on the folks who are really struggling.”
That’s very good advice.