The head of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers resigned yesterday after being told he would otherwise be fired for remarks he made criticizing the Bush administration budget proposal. In congressional testimony, Mike Parker, Army assistant secretary for civil works, said the Bush budget for the Army Corps was about $2 billion under what he felt the agency needed. Parker declined to comment on his resignation; a White House official said only that, “The administration would expect that one of its appointees would support the president and his budget.” Politicians on both sides of the aisle expressed dismay over the forced resignation, which was perceived by many as suppression of dissent. Still, environmentalists found ample reason to rejoice: Parker enthusiastically pursued Army Corps projects, which are often criticized for running roughshod over the environment, and was openly skeptical of wetlands protections. Scott Faber of Environmental Defense called Parker’s resignation “one of the best things that’s happened for the environment since God separated the heavens from the earth.”
Donate now to support our work.