Browner Resigns

Climate and energy czar Carol Browner, a former commissioner of the Socialist International whom the president appointed to a previously non-existent position to avoid the Senate confirmation process, is stepping down from her post. Some knowledgeable sources say Browner is resigning to avoid testifying under oath to a House oversight committee.

My Competitive Enterprise Institute colleague William Yeatman highlights this sentence from Politico’s “Morning Energy” coverage of the development: “Her calm, authoritative television presence during last year’s BP oil disaster made her one of the few government officials whose stature was enhanced in the aftermath of the Gulf of Mexico catastrophe.”

This analysis conflicts with her appearance on Meet the Press, when David Gregory juxtaposed her comments from her prior MTP appearance in the immediate aftermath of the BP spill (“this is the greatest environmental catastrophe in history”) with her later appearance on Good Morning America (when she trumpeted a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration report estimating that 75 percent of the spill was gone). Then, her office got caught doctoring a report to make it appear as if the administration’s drilling moratorium was approved by a panel of scientists.

Politico’s coverage is certainly slipping, and in a helpful way to this administration. President Obama is eager for the assistance, as he tries to hide from the public the often radical nature of his administration’s actions with a new campaign of soothing (and ultimately ineffectual) words that are crafted to suggest a shift to the middle.

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