Not Watt! Nit Whit!
In a move that has environmentalists up in arms, President-elect George W. Bush nominated former Colorado Attorney General Gale Norton for Interior secretary on Friday. Norton, a protege of James Watt, Ronald Reagan’s first Interior secretary, was part of an effort under Watt to try to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil drilling and has been an active critic of the Clinton administration’s land protection record. She is an advocate of granting states, local governments, and corporations a greater say in how the federal government regulates the environment. Bush has also nominated New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman (R) to head the U.S. EPA. As governor, Whitman has cut the state’s environmental protection budget by 30 percent and promoted voluntary compliance with environmental regulations. She has also fought against ocean dumping and launched an effort to protect 1 million acres from urban sprawl.