It looks like Stephen Johnson may have dodged a bullet in his bid to win congressional approval to be the next head of the Environmental Protection Agency.
A 24-year veteran of the EPA, Johnson’s nomination to head the agency, where he is currently the acting administrator, was not in doubt until the other day when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi raised objections about a little known EPA research project called CHEERS (Children’s Environmental Exposure Research Study).
The program was limited to families in Duval County (Fla.) that routinely used pesticides inside their homes. It offered parents $970 over two years if they made sure their young children went about their usual activities as the use of pesticides continued. Researchers would then visit the home every three to six months to collect data.
Wow! Can you imagine? The government comes to your door and tells you they are concerned about the effect of certain pesticides on young children. Then they offer you money ($930) if you will continue to expose your child to these pesticides for the next two years so that they can record what happens. (Come here, Junior. Stand over there while I spray this.) Where did they come up with this? It sounds like something straight out of Hitler’s Nazi concentration camps.
Fortunately, the study had already been suspended pending further inverstigation after receiving negative publicity last year. What set Pelosi off was that they were even considering going forward with it.
Well, not any more.