U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy waves before signing new regulations for power plants at EPA headquarters June 2, 2014 in Washington, DC.
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty

Lawmaker eyes impeachment for EPA chief

For quite a while, an alarmingly large number of congressional Republicans spoke openly about impeaching President Obama. The president’s GOP detractors were always a little fuzzy on why Obama needed to be impeached, but far-right lawmakers, egged on by their base and conservative media, nevertheless seemed fond of the idea.
The chatter has since died down – GOP leaders muzzled members in advance of the 2014 elections, fearful of energizing the Democratic base – but for some congressional Republicans, if they can’t impeach the president, gosh darn it, they’re going to try impeaching someone.
About a year ago, for example, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) toyed with the idea of launching an impeachment crusade against then-Attorney General Eric Holder. Around the same time, Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) raised the prospect of impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson.
It’s now apparently Gina McCarthy’s turn. The Huffington Post reported yesterday:
Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) is looking to remove Environmental Protection Agency administrator Gina McCarthy from office, circulating a resolution calling for McCarthy’s impeachment.
In a letter sent to his congressional colleagues Wednesday, Gosar accused McCarthy of perjury, claiming the EPA chief lied to members of Congress during several appearances before House and Senate panels earlier this year.
The far-right congressman’s office posted a copy of the resolution online here (pdf).
So, does Gosar’s plan have a shot?
Well, probably not. An aide for House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said this week, “There is no plan to vote to impeach Gina McCarthy.”
But as we’ve seen, plans change, especially when it comes to what House Republicans choose to work on, so let’s not rule out the possibility.
Postscript: If Gosar’s name sounds familiar, a year ago, he put some real effort into the campaign to impeach Eric Holder. Maybe the Arizona Republican has some kind of Impeachment Fever? If this McCarthy gambit comes up short – a safe bet – will Gosar perhaps go after some other cabinet-level official?