Schweikert to tackle regs with new gavel

Rep. David Schweikert, a vocal critic of Obama administration regulations, will have a new platform from which to assail the president’s rule-making policies.

The Arizona Republican will be named chairman of the House Science Committee’s subcommittee on Environment, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Tex.), the full committee’s chairman, said Thursday.

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Schweikert replaces Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah), who left the post for a prized seat on the House Appropriations Committee.

“Too often, this Administration has tried to bypass Congress and impose its will on the American people through regulatory fiat,” Schweikert said Thursday in a written statement. “We have a responsibility to provide a check-and-balance to ensure there is fairness and openness in the process and that taxpayers are not being subjected to onerous and unnecessarily burdensome rules and regulations."

As chairman of the House Small Business subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight and Regulations, Schweikert has criticized various financial sector regulations imposed by the Obama administration.

The top spot on the Environmental panel will position him as a key player in the GOP’s campaign against a series of rules being drafted as part of Obama’s second-term climate change initiative.
 
Republicans have attacked the effort's centerpiece — a pair of rules putting new limits on power plant emissions — as a “war on coal,” and have vowed to put the issue front and center in the 2014 elections.

“The Obama Administration has presided over a massive expansion of government that has invaded every part of our daily lives and nowhere is this more evident than at the EPA,” Smith said. “Rep. Schweikert shares my commitment to pursue a vigorous oversight agenda that shines a light on the impact that government agencies like the EPA are having on working families and job creators nationwide.”