GOP lashes out at EPA chief over 'secret science'

Republican lawmakers pushed back at Environmental Protection Agency Chief Gina McCarthy after she assailed critics for charging the agency with using "secret science" to support its regulations.

Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) said McCarthy is "ignoring the big picture" in her defense of the agency.

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Vitter and a majority of Republicans have continued to berate the EPA for its proposed carbon emissions limits on power plants, which they say are backed up by faulty science.

"It is inexcusable for EPA to justify billions of dollar of economically significant regulations on science that is kept hidden from independent reanalysis and congressional oversight," Vitter said in a statement on Monday.

Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) echoed Vitter's sentiment.

“It’s disappointing that EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy continues to try to justify her agency’s use of secret science," Smith said in a statement. "Relying on undisclosed data is not good science and not good policy."

Smith added that in the coming weeks the House Science Committee will take up a bill that seeks to block the EPA from proposing regulations based on data that is not publicly disclosed.

McCarthy's comments on Monday were some of the first from the administrator that bashed critics for attempting to derail the EPA's science.

"Those critics are playing a dangerous game by discrediting the sound science our families and our businesses depend on every day," McCarthy said. "You can’t just claim the science isn’t real when it doesn’t align well with your political or financial interests."