By Ramsey Cox
The Senate is expected to vote on final confirmation of Tom Perez to be the secretary of Labor Thursday afternoon and whether to end debate on Gina McCarthy’s nomination to lead the EPA shortly after that.
“This is reflective of not some passionate left-winger … but a crusading ideologue who believes the law simply doesn’t apply to him,” McConnell said. “His ideological passion is what’s so troubling to me about Mr. Perez.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) defended Perez saying he has a “proven track record of public service.”
Republicans have objected to McCarthy not because she isn’t qualified, but because she would implement President Obama’s new regulation of carbon emissions from power plants. McCarthy currently serves as the EPA’s top air quality regulator.
“She’s overseen the implementation of numerous job-killing regulations,” McConnell said. “They’ve helped bring upon a depression.”
Reid argued she is a bipartisan choice because she formerly worked for then-Gov. Mitt Romney (R-Mass.).
Republicans agreed to hold an up-or-down vote on the nominees as part of a deal to avoid Senate rule changes limiting the minority's right to filibuster executive branch nominees.
Reid said he hoped the Senate would complete business on both nominations by the end of Thursday.