By Keith Laing - 09/30/11 08:43 PM EDT
"It has come to my attention that the new Corporate Average Fuel Economy and EPA vehicle greenhouse gas standards announced by President Obama and automobile manufacturers on July 29, 2011 were negotiated in secret, outside the scope of law and could generate significant negative impacts for consumers," he wrote. "I am concerned about the negative impact these standards could have on the safety of automobiles, the possibility that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration acted outside the scope of congressionally delegated authority, and the lack of transparency in the process leading up to the agreement."
Issa previously wrote letters to automakers asking for information about their interactions with the Obama administration, saying to them in July “I am concerned about the agreement's lack of transparency, the failure to conduct an open rulemaking process, as well as the potential for vehicle cost increases on consumers and negative impact on American jobs.”
The carbon emissions exchanging, or cap-and-trade, proposal that had been sought by environmentalists was approved by the House of Representatives in 2009, but it was never approved by the Senate.
Many observers attributed losses of vulnerable Democrats in coal-reliant states like West Virginia in the 2010 elections that saw Republicans regain control of the House to the cap-and-trade vote.