WASHINGTON—Today, House Committee on Oversight and Reform Ranking Member James Comer (R-Ky.) and Environment Subcommittee Ranking Member Ralph Norman (R-S.C.) sent a letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael S. Regan seeking all documents and communications related to their decision to abruptly fire 40 Trump administration appointed members of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) and Science Advisory Board (SAB).
“We are conducting oversight of your decision to abruptly fire all Trump administration appointed members of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) and Science Advisory Board (SAB),” wrote the lawmakers. “Traditionally science advisory boards are bipartisan panels used to provide advice to the Administrator. Unfortunately, it appears the Biden administration is continuing to purge officials in the government who do not share its political beliefs.”
In 2017, House Democrats raised concerns because nine members of one scientific advisory committee were not renewed for a second term. In contrast, the Biden Administration has now fired more than 40 board members appointed during the previous administration, not even allowing them to complete their terms.
“The midterm firing of science advisory board members within the first months of a new Administration demonstrates a deeply troubling partisan political agenda. Your apparent decision to use a political litmus test to determine who should serve on EPA scientific advisory boards raises serious concerns about the politization of the EPA.”
In order for Committee Republicans to better understand EPA’s reasoning for firing science advisory board members in what appears to be a political purge, the lawmakers are requesting all information by April 21, 2021.
Read the full letter here.