Reason for long delay

The Senate voted on Thursday to confirm Gina McCarthy as head of the Environmental Protection Agency.

It has been more than four months since President Barack Obama nominated McCarthy to replace Lisa Jackson.

Liberal lawmakers insist that the delay was obstructionism by conservatives – but there is more to the story.

It was reported some Republicans who blocked a vote on McCarthy were ready to allow one. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., the top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, explained why.

It seems the EPA has been engaged in obstructionism, too. Vitter said the agency now is ready to satisfy three key concerns.

One involves access to information about the agency, and another concerns an important study on EPA air pollution rules. Finally, Vitter said the EPA may be ready to look at studies of the effect its rules have on the economy.

EPA officials should have been doing all these things previously. It is a shame McCarthy’s confirmation had to be held up to force the agency to do the right thing.