WASHINGTON, Dec. 15, 2015 – Another day, another controversy at President Obama’s scandal-ridden Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
We learned Monday that the EPA violated the law by engaging in a social media blitz designed to drum up support for President Obama’s “Clean Water Rule.”
The law in question grants government control over many lakes and waterways that were previously owned by states and local jurisdictions. The overreaching rule was ultimately blocked by a federal court, but the EPA and the Obama administration have made it very clear they are continuing to fight for the rule, which is what appears to have gotten them in trouble.
From The New York Times:
The Environmental Protection Agency engaged in “covert propaganda” and violated federal law when it blitzed social media to urge the public to back an Obama administration rule intended to better protect the nation’s streams and surface waters, congressional auditors have concluded.
The ruling by the Government Accountability Office, which opened its investigation after a report on the agency’s practices in The New York Times, drew a bright line for federal agencies experimenting with social media about the perils of going too far to push a cause. Federal laws prohibit agencies from engaging in lobbying and propaganda.
This revelation should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed the agency over the last several years.
In 2012, the EPA was improperly using government credit cards for personal expenses.
In 2013, there were four separate scandals going on at the same time at the EPA. The issues ranged from giving ethics awards to fake employees to blowing taxpayer money to leaking confidential information to environmental groups.
You may have also heard about the EPA employee who lied to his superiors at the agency and convinced them he was a CIA agent and then proceeded to take huge periods of time off of work while getting paid by the taxpayers.
To top it off, this year, EPA contractors accidentally dumped millions of gallons of toxic waste into a Colorado river, contaminating the drinking water for thousands of people and causing devastating harm to the environment. The EPA allegedly bullied its way into the mine in the first place by extorting the mine owner, and not only did they not take full responsibility for the spill, less than a month later, they did it again.
The many scandals have even caused many lawmakers in Washington to call for the impeachment of EPA chief Gina McCarthy, who many believe committed perjury when testifying before Congress on the data that was used to come up with some of the regulations they have rolled out of the last few years.
After promising to install the most “transparent” administration in history, there is very little doubt that President Obama has not lived up to that bold claim.
The same question that has been raised when we have learned about the scandals in other Obama administration departments like the VA, IRS and DOJ persists today. At what point will this administration acknowledge that there is a problem with managing the size of today’s government and when, if ever, will the EPA finally be reined in?
Political observers on the right aren’t holding their breath.