Trump’s EPA chemical safety nominee withdraws nomination

Trump’s EPA chemical safety nominee withdraws nomination
© Camille Fine

President TrumpDonald John TrumpWhere do we go from here? Conservation can show the way Gov. Ron DeSantis more popular in Florida than Trump Sotomayor accuses Supreme Court of bias in favor of Trump administration MORE's nominee to lead the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) chemical safety office has withdrawn his nomination amid criticism from lawmakers about his ties to the chemical industry. 

Michael Dourson, a former chemical industry consultant, had come under increased scrutiny from Democratic and Republican senators who voiced concern about his work in the chemical industry.

He notified the Trump administration of his intent to withdraw his nomination on Wednesday.

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Dourson had worked for the EPA until 1995. After leaving he started a nonprofit group to evaluate chemical toxicity, mostly for the chemical industry.

He merged his firm with the University of Cincinnati in 2015 and became part of the faculty, but he continued to do similar toxicology assessment work.

Democrats and environmentalists criticized his work as being friendly to chemical companies and downplaying the dangers of certain chemicals.

Dourson's nomination made it through committee, but a confirmation vote before the full Senate was never scheduled.

Two North Carolina Republicans, Sens. Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisThe Hill's Campaign Report: What to watch for in Nevada Top GOP super PAC spent money on NC Democrat The Hill's Campaign Report: Warren up, Bloomberg down after brutal debate MORE and Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrTrump's new intel chief makes immediate changes, ousts top official Intel officials warned House lawmakers Russia is interfering to get Trump reelected: NYT Pelosi joins pressure campaign on Huawei MORE, said last month that they would not vote in favor of Dourson, pointing to water safety concerns at Camp Lejeune in their home state.

Timothy Cama contributed to this report.