Duckworth Statement on Withdrawal of Trump Nominee Michael Dourson
Duckworth had placed a hold on Dourson’s nomination to oversee chemical safety policy at the EPA
[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) released the following statement today after reports surfaced that Dr. Michael Dourson, President Trump’s nominee to lead the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, is withdrawing his nomination. Last night, the New York Times published 400 pages of emails revealing he was working on behalf of the chemical industry while being considered for the EPA position. Duckworth has been an outspoken critic of Dourson’s nomination to oversee chemical safety policy at the EPA and had placed a hold on his nomination.
“From the Southside of Chicago to military bases like Camp Lejeune, servicemembers, parents and children across our country can breathe a sigh of relief that Dr. Dourson will not lead the office that protects Americans from toxic chemicals,” said Senator Duckworth. “I’ve heard from families throughout Illinois who suffered firsthand from Dr. Dourson’s decades of defending poisonous chemicals that have caused health problems in children and been linked to high cancer rates in servicemembers and Veterans across the country. He was neither qualified nor fit to work in any capacity at the EPA and it’s time for him to leave the agency without delay.”
Duckworth grilled Dourson during his Senate confirmation hearing over his Koch Industries-funded “research” that falsely claimed exposure to the dangerous toxin petroleum coke (petcoke) is safe. Dourson’s work was used by Koch-owned KCBX Terminals, Inc. to justify not cleaning up the toxin, which lead to high asthma rates and respiratory problems for adults and children that were exposed to the substance in Chicago’s Southeast Side.
Duckworth also wrote an op-ed expressing alarm over Dourson’s long track record of manipulating scientific research for profit to benefit corporate interests at the expense of public safety – and over his defense of toxic chemicals that have been linked to high cancer rates in servicemembers and Veterans across the country.
“Moving forward, the President must nominate someone who will put loyalty to the American people above the chemical industry’s profits,” Duckworth continued.
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