The New York Times reports that several high profile and long time staffers to Miss Boxer’s (sorry Senator Boxer, Barbie hate’s when you forget that) Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) have resigned since she took over. The most recent resignation is Joe Goffman. Goffman is one of the leading experts on environmental legislation and was key member of the EPW in 1989-90 when the Senate passed amendments to the Clean Air Act establishing a cap-and-trade system on sulfur dioxide pollution.
Sources on and off Capitol Hill told the New York Times that responsibilities were being passed to junior staff members rather than to the more experienced Goffman. Goffman and Boxer’s offices did not comment to The Times about the resignations.
Since taking her position as Chairwoman of the EPW several staffers have resigned to other positions. Eric Thu, left last month to go to the lobbying group Capitol Solutions. Erik Olson resigned last November after almost two years as deputy staff director and general council. Several members who have quit have been on the committee since Senator Jim Jeffords was the chairman from 2001-06. Mary Francis-Repko left to become House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer’s top aide, and Michael Goo left in September 2007 and worked with Rep. Ed Markey on the House version of the Cap and Trade Energy Tax.
With so many key experts jumping ship, one has to wonder what is going on in Senator Boxer’s committee. As one Democratic staffer told The New York Times “It’d be very odd for the chief health care person to leave the Health Committee or the Finance Committee a couple weeks before they were supposed to mark up their bill.” It is obvious that Senator Boxer is quickly losing control of her bill and should not be trusted to handle such a major piece of legislation.