President-elect Barack Obama is strongly considering Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to head the Environmental Protection Agency, a Cabinet post, Democratic officials told Politico.
I must say, I don’t see this:
The selection of Kennedy would be a shrewd early move for the new presidential team. Obama advisers said the nomination would please both Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.).
It might please Clinton and Kennedy, but by my count it will piss off just about everyone else. Enviros are still pissed about his opposition to Cape Wind. Sensible people are pissed about his naive acceptance of the phantom vaccine-autism connection. Many journalists are pissed that his overheated work on Republican vote theft in 2004 served to discredit more modest but verifiable theories. He’s also, to put it bluntly, widely considered considered kind of an arrogant jerk — which makes me like him more, but I don’t know how it will play in a delicate and highly constrained bureaucratic position.
Also, the guy’s run Waterkeeper, which is a great group, but not exactly training for running a huge government agency.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of RFK Jr.’s environmental work, but he strikes me as more of a strident activist voice than a careful, detail-oriented managerial type. His appointment would sure send an unmistakable message, though! I suppose I’m ambivalent and should give it more thought.
What do y’all think?
Postscript: Huffington Post got him on the phone, where he said he would happily serve if asked. He also said:
“I think that Barack Obama understands that energy must be the centerpiece for his administration. That there really are two big issues, one is health care and the other is energy,” he said. “And energy is intertwined with all other issues. If we can get off of foreign oil, for instance, we can save 700 billion a year. We can pay back the Wall Street debt we just ran up in just one year.”
“That whole dark cloud of the Bush administration,” he added, “has all the sudden been lifted.”