A Senate Hearing Needed on OSHA Nominee

A broad cross-section of industry, farm and retail trade associations yesterday sent a letter to the leaders of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee asking for confirmation hearings on the nomination of David Michaels to head the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Michaels has advocated for more government regulation, even when the available science
and data to support such regulations is inadequate or unsettled. He has also attacked the landmark, unanimous Supreme Court decision in Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, which stands for the proposition that scientific evidence in litigation must meet certain standards to be admitted. Michaels has also been the beneficiary of product liability actions which have been shown to be without merit. Finally, nominees for the OSHA Assistant Secretary have traditionally been subject to a hearing before their confirmations moved forward. We see no reason why Professor Michaels should be an exception. Accordingly, as detailed below, we believe his views warrant a hearing and thorough examination before his nomination can proceed.

The National Association of Manufacturers, which joined the coalition letter, also sent its own letter to the Hill requesting the hearing.

For more on the Michaels’ nomination, see this August 18 Shopfloor.org post.

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