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Subject:  Re: EPA Regulatory Agenda Date:  1/3/2013  10:28 PM
Author:  rmhj Number:  415575 of 507732

NTJ: Ummm... then, fire them. Obama was the head of the Executive Branch of the Government of the United States of America the last time I checked. If he can't for some legal reason, then sideline them and put an Acting in charge.

There are a lot of details here, and they matter.

There are political appointments, and they must be approved by the senate (IIRC, they are listed in the "plum book"). The Republican minority has done a more than credible job of blocking Obama appointees. Obama's appointees for the most part are rather centrist/corporatist, despite what many would have you believe. The president can appoint many of them when congress is in recess, but there are significant limitations there.

Below that are the civil service positions. These are positions that to significant degree are protected against political influence, and make up the ranks of government service. Getting political hacks into these position can be, and is, done (and is called "burrowing"), but it takes a lot of time and will, and is made much harder by not having the top-level appointees in place, and is much easier if certain CS positions have been subverted (IGs, the GSA, personnel dep'ts, ...).

[Disclaimer: it has been many years since I lived near DC and knew a few people in the GS hierarchy.]

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