Thursday, July 16, 2009

CPSIA - Consumer Groups Feel Snubbed, Boo-hoo!

The nerve of some people! From today's Congress Daily:


The nomination of Harvard Law scholar Cass Sunstein to head OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affair looks to be moving toward confirmation after he met with farm lobbyists and a senator upset with his views on animal rights, but consumer and environmental groups are peeved they could not get such meetings.

Senate Agriculture ranking member Saxby Chambliss said Wednesday he was lifting a hold he put on Sunstein due to his writings urging stronger rights for animals and suggesting animals be allowed to become plaintiffs in lawsuits.

Chambliss said he felt Sunstein had listened to both his concerns and those of farm groups.

But after CongressDaily reported those meetings, representatives of several consumer groups faulted Sunstein for refusing to meet with them over their concerns about his views on the use of cost-benefit analysis in regulation. OIRA reviews regulations proposed by other federal agencies.

Those groups included Public Citizen, the National Resources Defense Council, the Environmental Defense Fund and Center for Progressive Reform. "It certainly sends a curious signal that he is allowed to meet with agribusiness [representatives] and big business, but not consumer advocates," said one spokesman. "Surely the administration doesn't just not care what consumer advocates want." Representatives of several of the groups said they had a meeting scheduled with Sunstein last winter but showed up to find Sally Katzen, who held the same job under President Clinton and is now at the Podesta Group, in Sunstein's place.

Katzen said Sunstein had been "muzzled" during the confirmation process, sources at the meeting said.

"Like all nominees Cass was not meeting with any outside groups to discuss policy positions of the administration," an administration official said.


Wacky Hermit said...

Of course they're upset about the use of cost-benefit analysis. They know it won't go their way!

jennifer said...

seems like maybe he could be a shinning light for this administration...just imagine cpsia with a risk based/cost-benefit approach...if only.

Anonymous said...

Sunstein doesn't need to meet with consumer "advocates". He already agrees with them.

I am reading his Laws of Fear and while he gives a lot of print to cost-benefit analysis he is also a global warming hack and likely agrees w/Waxman's current disaster. He can't talk about that because those who are against the global warming bill are chanting "BTU, BTU' and making the moderate dems run for cover to try and save their seats in the next election. Even our "prospective" Senator says he is undecided on the Waxman bill because the Ohio Senate passed a statement saying the State of Ohio is against the Waxman bill---they are speaking fro the whole state with that. Most are going to listen to what Sunstein says now rather than go read his books so if he says something that gets into the press his nomination will be down the drain.

Those whose minds have been changed on this guy ought to remember there is a difference in being heard & listened to and actual agreement.

In the book he goes on about cost-benefit, etc and then at the end of each chapter (so far) says that none of this ought to apply to global warming and he sounds the panic alarm. He might just do the same thing for lead and phthalates. (The CPSIA did make me learn to spell that word!)

I am beginning to wonder if anything good can come out of the University of Chicago except a false messiah.