By on September 18, 2014

Henry Waxman

In the wake of a report written by Republican members of the United States House of Representatives regarding the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration inability to find and link evidence regarding General Motors’ involvement in the design and implementation of an ignition switch now linked to 54 accidents and 19 fatalities, two Democrat members took the report’s authors to task.

The Detroit News reports Representatives Henry A. Waxman of California and Diana DeGette of Colorado, both members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee whose Republican majority penned the report, proclaim the report ignores GM’s role in the problems leading up to the February 2014 recall crisis that saw 2.6 million vehicles recalled in one go, placing the blame squarely upon the automaker’s shoulders.

The duo also laid criticism upon Republicans in both houses of Congress for not moving faster on legislation meant to prevent disasters like the one experienced by GM:

There is still time to improve auto safety in this country and to demand more from both car companies and regulators. Republicans should act quickly to pass legislation that solves the auto safety problems they identified in their report.

Meanwhile, Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan, who had planned to bring automotive safety legislation up for consideration back in July, said he wasn’t decided on the matter. He explained that while Congress would continue to look for answers and build toward solving them, the “NHTSA was part of the problem and is going to have to be part of the solution.”

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31 Comments on “House Dems Take Republicans To Task Over NHTSA Report...”


  • avatar
    thornmark

    >>The duo also laid criticism upon Republicans in both houses of Congress for not moving faster on legislation meant to prevent disasters like the one experienced by GM<<

    Yes, their leader’s most famous maxim is "we have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it”. “Disaster experienced by GM” – sounds like GM is the victim. Weird.

    It would be nice to know what the majority’s report actually said, not just the Dem spin.

    btw, last time I looked, their team controls the Senate so naturally they meant to criticize the Dem majority there..

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      If you want to read the report, head over to the Energy and Commerce Committee’s website and read it. It’s not a deep dark secret.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      “It would be nice to know what the majority’s report actually said”

      If you’re genuinely interested, you can find it on the committee website or in the Detroit News article linked above (and which you apparently didn’t read, in spite of your laser focus on this subject.)

      “last time I looked, their team controls the Senate”

      You probably should type “cloture rule”, “senate 60 votes” or something similar into your favorite search engine.

      In any case, the issue here seems to be not one of right vs. left, but of NHTSA vs. GM.

      And if you use that search engine thing that I mentioned, you will find that Fred Upton, who would have had control over this report, is a member of the House automotive caucus, which might suggest a possible conflict of interest.

  • avatar
    VanillaDude

    Henry Waxman isn’t someone you want to listen to on this issue because it requires a balanced, unbiased and reasoning approach. He is not capable of doing that, and has failed to discover how to do that, for over three decades in Washington. He is not a good source for any point of view unless you are interested in what an individual completely detached from reality thinks.

    • 0 avatar
      Eiriksmal

      My favorite Waxman moment came on the steroid documentary Bigger Faster Stronger*. In it, Waxman had to ask his aide what the legal drinking is in California, and whether different states had different age-related alcohol restrictions. Hiiiiiilarious, give it a whirl.

      Youtube: youtube.com/watch?v=xxLNKnLaDG8

  • avatar
    TW5

    The charge of the light brigade. The November artillery bombardment will impose heavy casualties. Only two more months of sniveling left to endure.

    • 0 avatar
      walleyeman57

      We can only hope.
      I predict 2 more years of sniveling from POTUS. The guy who saves his harsh criticism for those of the other party. Open borders, more taxes, more government, and slam those rich guys-while taking millions from them in campaign donations.

    • 0 avatar
      Xeranar

      You do realize all the polls are indicating a retention of Democratic control in the Senate? Never mind the president would veto any right-wing legislation because the victory in the senate wouldn’t be enough for cloture let alone 2/3rds majority.

      2016 is shaping up to be a banner year in the senate anyways as all the 2010 freshmen senators like Pat Toomey will likely be ousted so that slim 52-54 Dem lead could actually eclipse 60 which would still mean slow goings for everybody until 2020 when the redistricting and census data would install Democrats across much of the US due to the presidential campaign voting and hopefully a full change in how we allocate districts to create more competitive districts across the US.

      • 0 avatar
        Landcrusher

        Keep moving everything towards more central power and redistribution, and you better change your opinion of Ayn Rand. She will look like a prophet. I will die of old age in relative comfort as most of you guys get to figure out whether schadenfreude is a salve for a dreary existence.

        • 0 avatar
          Xeranar

          You mean Ayn Rand who supported pedophilia because it was the ultimate statement in self-definition? Or do you mean the Ayn Rand that was a third-rate novelist in her own time and a fourth-rate philosopher who didn’t even understand the basics of capitalism? Maybe the Rand who was openly fascist, sexist, and racist?

          Here is her basic argument: You should be selfish, selfish gets you far. The problem is once everybody is selfish there is no interaction that takes place accept at the end of barrels. It breaks down society and frankly Rand’s utopia would only work if it had a trading partner that agreed to keep supplying them. But for sure, LC, for sure she’ll be beloved one day….

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I know you two like to spar on a number of political topics and kudos, but I only ask you leave something as reprehensible as pedophilia out of the conversation. Seriously. Thanks.

          • 0 avatar
            Landcrusher

            The counter factual hyperbole in that doesn’t deserve contradiction so I will just reinforce my point.

            You guy keep getting people to trade rights for free stuff and the country will never get out of this malaise. It will only get worse. More and more people will just cease to do the necessary work for actual progress and either just quit, or join the crowd and do what benefits them in the new game.

          • 0 avatar
            Xeranar

            To be fair, 28, I should clarify since I genuinely may have put forward a slight misnomer. She was accepting of a pedophile because he completed his internal desire. She saw no moral qualm with it in concept which is why Rand is generally viewed as a poor philosopher because it’s exceptionally easy to build a thought system that simply elevates your wants above all others.

            That being said, I don’t intend to bring it up further but if you dislike that she supported it perhaps you need to read more on her.

            EDIT: LC updated just as I was writing. I wouldn’t argue with you if you didn’t live in a fantasy land. Rights for free stuff? Can I trade in my free speech for a tesla now?

            I’m not even going to bother with the list of ‘free stuff’ that people get that was debunked as either a long established government program or so piss poor it barely qualifies as a thing to given. Malaise? For the record the recession is over and our economy is picking up, it was picking up in 2012 and while there are some indicators that capitalists are using this opportunity to shift labor around at the expense of citizenry it has little to do with any sort of left-wing ideological system.

            I hate to break it to you but the failures of our system to provide for everybody falls squarely at the feet of capitalism. But you’re so headstrong on the issue you’re blind to the practical realities that play out everyday in this country and others.

          • 0 avatar
            wolfinator

            No, he means the Ayn Rand who DIED ON WELFARE, sucking at the government teat. Because she couldn’t even make her messed up psychosis…erm, “philosophy” work for HERSELF, much less a group of people, much less a nation.

            That’s all you need to know about Rand. At the end of her life, dying of a disease that could have been avoided – had she understood how science works – she hitched her car to the government train. Went right ahead and spooged off the welfare state to keep her sad little corpse lurching along for a few short years.

          • 0 avatar
            Landcrusher

            Wolfinator, you have repeated the worst of arguments. All elderly people in this country die under Medicare, and they do so having been forced to pay for it by the Feds.

            Do you seriously expect people, having had their labor taxed without a chance to opt out, to feel hypocritical for then accepting the benefits they were forced to pay for?

            It’s amazing how much hate this poor little refugee from totalitarian oppression generates with her tireless rants against oppression in the name of redistribution. She wasn’t really a serious scholar, yet she gets deified by the vileness of her antagonists whose complaints are so varied and contradictory you have to ask if the people spewing them force have been somehow bewitched.

            She wrote a book that tries in every way, even the most tiresome and extreme, to share the idea that oppression is oppressive. It celebrates the dignity of freedom, hard work, self reliance, and private property which someone from her background could only find amazing after witnessing both mid twentieth century America and a communist pit. It warns against redistribution as a path to despotism which she actually witnessed.

            Bring up her name though, and the Left just can’t help it. They have to try to victimize her alll over again. It’s just amazing. One little woman for Pete’s sake.

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        If you must vote for liberal incompetence, vote local. Don’t force the rest of us to subsidize this kind of failure. The current admin makes Bush-era Republicanism seem like a Utopian period in US history. Americans were not made to endure this sort of humiliation.

        • 0 avatar
          Xeranar

          Sorry, you don’t even get a gold star for silliness on this one. 80% of our national debt has come from right-wing policies, mainly those put forward during the Reagan and Bush administration. During the tenure of Democratic presidents our GDP has increased at a rate faster than inflation while under Republican presidents its remained flat and even recessed somewhat.

          In no practical effect has right-wing economic policies ever actually grown the economy in any measurable way. The fact that they still get to keep lying is a great benefit of the First Amendment I treasure, but it doesn’t excuse you from realizing it is a lie.

          • 0 avatar
            TW5

            Revenues have been more or less constant since WWII. Debt comes from spending. Do a bit of homework, and then report back to us which programs have exponential cost growth.

            The US is the wealthiest nation on earth (still, somehow). Our responsibility is not to install a morally-pure, insular social state that satisfies with your myopic world view.

          • 0 avatar
            Landcrusher

            Xer,
            Sorry, but when FDR and LBJ, and the legislators that went along and the voters ever since promised everyone money and healthcare based on a virtual Ponzi scheme, I’m not going to buy blaming it on the defense budget that used to be two thirds of the budget and is now a side show.

            It really doesn’t matter though. Blame whoever you want. I will blame forced redistribution that has, as predicted by soooo many people you probably hate, gone too far.

            Since you love polls, I suppose you took note of the recent polls where likely voters trust Republicans to better handle virtually everything except giving them free stuff? At the same time, the polls show registered voters prefer Democrats. If you think that’s a good combination, there is likely a special hell for what you are going to do to the next couple generations of kids.

          • 0 avatar
            Xeranar

            Just to wrap up a few days old post so LC doesn’t have his last word:

            Polls are a dime a dozen, check the ‘trusted to do’ polls every 6 months to a year. Guess who comes in first? EVERYBODY. Seriously, that whole poll is more or less the wish-wash of a nation uneducated and unsure on who can handle what. It’s a better suggestion of what people feel like the right course is in that election. In 2006 Democrats had a wide margin, 2008 as well, 2010 it went to Republicans, 2012 back to Dems, 2014 is closer to split and assuredly 2016 is going to Democrats.

            Simply put the slow grind of ‘who do we trust’ is more a moment to moment reference of a win/lose battle of public opinion. Never mind that you can’t seem to figure out the difference between a citizen unregistered to vote and those who are registered unless you’re making a black helicopter reference to some hidden deviation in society that only counts white voters who vote conservative as ‘real Americans?’ But you wouldn’t be so brazen in your pathetic logic.

            I grew up when Republicans took control of national politics, I took my lumps as a liberal until 2006/8. You had a slim majority for about 20-30 years, held congress the presidency for 20 years & had the house & senate for almost a decade. You ran this country into the ground and then wonder why the younger generations aren’t interested in your economic policy never mind that the only reason that conservatism as you understand had a groundswell was the rush of dixicrats from the South buying into corporate conservatism that was willing to sell out blacks to keep the system going. We’re aging out of white backlash and you’re about to become a permanent minority if you’re a Randian objectivist.

          • 0 avatar
            Landcrusher

            Xer,
            You can have the last word if you ask. I don’t care that much.

            I don’t know what makes you think that any given poll source is especially good. They invariably get proven wrong just about the time they look like they are trustworthy.

            I also don’t know what makes you think I don’t know the difference between poll methods. Just feeling beat up so you have to go ad hominem? Actually, it’s par for you so I should expect it. I’ll go ahead and repeat what you’ve keep getting told, just because I don’t agree with you doesn’t mean I am stupid.

            You history seems to exaggerate Republican control and ignore Democratic control, but the reality is it doesn’t matter. No matter who is in control. Bad policy is bad policy. I am not partisan. I have my own beliefs that only partially overlap with Republicans and which you keep getting wrong in your haste to win arguments by spouting ad hominem attacks, and misapplied dogma.

            So go ahead, have the last word. Feel free to tell us all what great policies that you as a liberal wanted passed that would have solved anything. Really, anything. I won’t respond unless asked a question.

            Out.

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    Are we supposed to be mad at the government employees for not identifying the problem or the other government employees for not identifying the problem?

  • avatar
    Landcrusher

    If NHTSA couldn’t make a link, what the hell is the legislation going to say? Think about that, and then take it down a couple more levels. Dwell on it a bit.

    Okay, the Republicans, who are in reality the opposition party right now (though the press and partisans want you to think otherwise) did EXACTLY what they are supposed to do. They got off their butts and found a problem in government. It doesn’t matter why they did it because they were supposed to. It’s part of their jobs.

    The Democratic response here is about all you need to know about the problem with our government. The problem is not ideology, it’s actual partisanship to the extreme. I have to say actual partisanship because partisanship has been redefined to mean Republicans not letting the Dems do whatever they want.

    And Puhlease! Let’s not have a round of politicians are always this way, be realistic, etc. If we don’t expect better, we aren’t going to get it.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      +100

      Compromise is how this country started. The constitution is filled with compromise.

      Pity that compromise in politics today means you have no backbone.

      “How dare you not tow the party line” is how things work. Lieberman got booted from his party because he disagreed with them.

      • 0 avatar
        Landcrusher

        And, it seems to be a bipartisan thing. They at least agree on that.

        It sounds simpler than it is, but you compromise on party agendas but not your principles. We now have that backwards somehow.

  • avatar
    walleyeman57

    Since our government spent billions bailing out both GM and the UAW should we be shocked that they cater to them?

    Had this been Toyota, after the first 3 reports of failures, there would have been news conferences and press releases. Instead we wait 5 years. Remember the whipping Toyota took for its customers not installing the correct floor mats and not knowing how to shut off their cars?

    Of course GM is at fault for attempting to sweep this under the rug. They had LOTS of help from the Feds.

  • avatar
    carguy

    The GM recall fiasco is GMs fault. How intrusive do you want the NHTSAs oversight of car makers to be?

    • 0 avatar
      Landcrusher

      If we are going to spend money to have an investigation, we ought to expect them to connect the dots. They didn’t, so what are we paying them for?

      And what if they had? What benefit? We found out anyway. Relook at the agency and cut the bits that we really don’t need. If they whine they needed more money, the first to get the axe should be the whiner.

  • avatar
    Roader

    Looking at NHTSA’s 2015 budget I see an $815 million top line including $93 million for salaries & benefits for 637 full time equivalent employees. $93 million / 637 employees = $146,000 per employee.

    Not bad for gummint work. There’s a reason why 4 out of 5 of the richest counties in the US – by median household income – are around DC. The single county outside of the Beltway is Los Alamos, where the federal gummint employs half the people in the county.

  • avatar
    rnc

    “If you don’t eat your beets you can’t have any pudding!

    How can you have any pudding if you don’t eat your beets?”

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