Liberal advocacy group MoveOn.org is furious with Friday's announcement that President Barack Obama backed down on air regulations, overruling the Environmental Protection Association, and is wondering how its members will be able to work for his re-election.
Republicans had criticized the proposed EPA plan to tighten smog rules, saying it would be an obstacle to business growth. The administration's announcement came several hours after a new report revealed no net jobs were created in August.
In a statement, MoveOn.org Executive Director Justin Ruben said the president "caved to big polluters" and his decision is one "we'd expect from George W. Bush":
According to the EPA, the clean air standards the President blocked would have saved up to 12,000 children, elderly folks, and others each year. That means thousands are likely to die because the President caved to big polluters. Many MoveOn members are wondering how they can ever work for President Obama's re-election, or make the case for him to their neighbors, when he does something like this, after extending the Bush tax cuts for the rich, and giving in to Tea Party demands on the debt deal. This is a decision we'd expect from George W. Bush, not from a Democratic President elected to protect the environment and the health of our children.
MoveOn.org, you'll recall, was behind the "General Petraeus -- General Betray Us" ad campaign, among other exploits, and recently teamed up with Van Jones to start the "Rebuild the American Dream" movement.
The smog announcement was the White House's second major blow to environmental activists in just one week. Last Friday, the administration removed a major roadblock for the proposed 1,700-mile Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the U.S.