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GOP Introduces Bill to Roll Back Executive Branch ‘Czars’

Van Jones, former WH green jobs "czar"

A group of nearly 30 Republican members of the House of Representatives has introduced a bill to rein in the various "czars" serving in the Obama administration.

The bill mirrors similar legislation introduced in the 111th Congress that was not allowed to advanced under Democrats' majority control.

But with Republicans commanding the House majority in the 112th Congress, Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., and the 28 other Republican co-sponsors on the bill are hoping to do away with the informal, paid advisers President Obama has employed over the last two years.

The Hill reports:

The legislation, which was introduced in the last Congress but was not allowed to advance under Democratic control, would do away with the 39 czars Obama has employed during his administration.

The bill defines a czar as "a head of any task force, council, policy office within the Executive Office of the President, or similar office established by or at the direction of the President" who is appointed to a position that would otherwise require Senate confirmation.

Republicans had complained about the president's use of czars to help advance his agenda in Congress. In particular, the GOP had harped about the personal history of Van Jones, the president's czar for "green jobs," over past comments Jones had made about Fox News came to light. Jones eventually resigned.

Another prominent czar over the past year was Carol Browner, the president's energy and environmental adviser. She helped head up efforts in response to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, and the ultimately unsuccessful effort for an energy and climate bill from Congress.

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