White House Secrecy Helps Politics Subvert Environmental Health at OMB

December 18, 2013

The WatchDog has long complained that secrecy at the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) helps well-heeled industry lobbyists thwart rules to protect public safety and health. Now Juliet Eilperin has gotten the evidence to prove it.

In a December 14, 2013, Washington Post story, Eilperin shows with documents and insider interviews how election politics trumped open government, regulatory law, and public health in the run-up to the 2012 election.

"Some agency officials were instructed to hold off submitting proposals to the White House for up to a year," Eilperin wrote, "to ensure that they would not be issued before voters went to the polls, the current and former officials said. The delays meant that rules were postponed or never issued. The stalled regulations included crucial elements of the Affordable Care Act, what bodies of water deserved federal protection, pollution controls for industrial boilers and limits on dangerous silica exposure in the workplace."