President Barack Obama, citing the nation’s struggling economy, asked the Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw an air quality rule that Republicans and business groups have said could cost tens of billions of dollars a year or more and kill thousands of jobs.
The surprise move came as the economic recovery continued to show signs of stalling, with the labor market failing to add new jobs in August for the first time since September 2010.
In a statement, Mr. Obama said he supported efforts to promote clean air but added, “I have continued to underscore the importance of reducing regulatory burdens and regulatory uncertainty, particularly as our economy continues to recover.”
The rule, which would have tightened standards for smog-forming ozone, has been under attack for months from industry groups and lawmakers. Republicans have cited the rule as a prime example of the regulatory overreach that they say is hampering the economic recovery.
Curiously, this doesn’t mean it’s really dead, not dead-dead:
Mr. Obama left open the possibility that the EPA proposal could be revived later, saying the ozone standard will be reconsidered in 2013.
So the translation is “maybe we should wait until after the election to destroy thousands of jobs and cost the economy billion of dollars.”