Obama caves on smog protections

Coalbama.President Obama’s got a tough gig, hemmed in by a blindly oppositional Republican Party and a petty, paralyzed Congress. But he didn’t need congressional approval to push ahead with new smog standards that would have prevented up to 8,000 premature deaths and up to 40,000 asthma attacks a year. In fact, the White House had to go out of its way to quash the regs, which it did for naked (and mistaken) political reasons. Fans of clean air wept. And coughed.