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February 20, 2017

Senate Advances Key Cabinet Nominations Supported By MSCI

Last Friday, the U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to be administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The vote was 52 to 46. 

As a reminder, the Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) recently joined the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) on a letter to all U.S. senators asking them to support and approve Pruitt’s nomination. The letter argued that the attorney general “understands that when regulations go too far and fail to adequately balance environmental protection with technological feasibility and impacts to economy, they cease to be in the best interest of the public.” The MSCI/NAM letter also noted that “American businesses face an enormous regulatory burden,” largely from the EPA. 

Indeed, according to NAM, environmental regulations make up the dominant share of manufacturers’ regulatory burden, costing them $10,497 per employee per year, five and a half times the amount spent on environmental regulations by the average business. 

The Senate also invoked cloture last week on the nomination of Wilbur Ross to be secretary of the U.S. Commerce Department. That vote was 66 to 31. The cloture motion allows a final decision on the Ross nomination to move forward. The Senate is expected to cast that vote when it returns next week. Earlier this month, MSCI, along with more than 400 companies and trade associations, sent a letter to U.S. senators asking them to support Ross’s nomination. The letter argued that Ross will bring to the role “a unique understanding of what it takes to fuel manufacturing enterprises” and that he also “has a firsthand understanding of the challenges manufacturers face to remain globally competitive in today's economy.” The full letter is available here