LaHood recalled that Obama directed the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to devise more stringent standards before the president finished his first month on the job in 2009.
Obama helped negotiate the joint DOT-EPA rules with major automakers in what was seen as a landmark achievement for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“It didn’t take one vote of Congress. All it took was a little bit of leadership here, and a little bit of leadership at EPA and DOT, and we made it happen,” LaHood said.
Some Republicans, however, have lashed out against Obama for the rulemaking.
They say the new standards will make cars more expensive, though the administration argues health benefits and reduced gasoline purchases will more than negate price jumps.
The Hill’s Keith Lang has more on Obama’s nomination of Foxx.