Safety should never take a backseat to politics

Earlier this month, the Chairman of the CPSC, in an article that was posted in several on-line publications, took the inappropriate measure of personally attacking the two Republican CPSC Commissioners.  In addition to being an extraordinary breach of collegiality, the Chairman injected politics into the important on-going debate concerning the role and boundaries of health and safety regulations.  While I have responded to the specifics of the Chairman’s diatribe in earlier blog posts, let me close out this subject by reminding her that policy disagreements should not be confused with partisanship. 

I have raised questions about, and in some cases opposed, actions this agency has taken recently because I believe that they are not sound decisions.  I would have made the same decisions whether the majority of commissioners were republicans, democrats, independents, or Martians, for that matter. 

If a child is hurt by a product that poses an unreasonable risk, it doesn’t matter whether the parents of that child are Republican or Democrat.  If a business making perfectly safe products is forced to close because of excessive regulation and people lose their jobs and livelihoods, it doesn’t matter whether those workers are Republican or Democrat.  I believe that at times this agency has lost sight of its responsibility to regulate in a responsible manner.  I will continue to point this out regardless of how many partisan or personal attacks the Chairman tries to make.   Safety isn’t, and shouldn’t be, partisan.

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