Sen. Mike Johanns isn’t running for re-election this year, but he’s interested in how the elections turn out and what impact they might have on Washington.
Johanns, a Republican, says the elections next week could determine whether bureaucracies will be reined in or have free rein to expand their powers.
“I think it gets worse over the next two years. Waters of the U.S. is one of the most egregious,” Johanns tells Nebraska Radio Network affiliate WNAX. “I mean this thought that we’re going to give EPA power over every puddle of water in the United States drives me crazy.”
Johanns has been a strong and vocal opponent of the Environmental Protection Agency proposal to revise the Clean Water Act called “Waters of the United States”.
Johanns says election results will send a message to Washington bureaucrats and Johanns hopes the message is that they need to work with Congress.
“Because what I worry about is, well let’s say Gina McCarthy (EPA Administrator) sees the light and she says well we’re not going to enforce it that way,” Johanns says. “What about the next one and the next one and the next EPA administrator 20 years from now. You’ve got to look ahead, because once these rules are in place, they’re hard to change.”
Johanns is retiring from public office. Republican Ben Sasse and Democrat Dave Domina are running to succeed him, as well as two independent candidates.
Jerry Oster, WNAX, contributed to this story.