CONCORD, N.H. – The head of the Environmental Protection Agency (search) for two Republican presidents criticized President Bush's (search) record on Monday, calling it a "polluter protection" policy.
Russell E. Train (search), who headed the EPA from September 1973 to January 1977 — part of the Nixon and Ford administrations — said Bush's record on the environment was so dismal that he would cast his vote for Democrat John Kerry (search).
"It's almost as if the motto of the administration in power today in Washington is not environmental protection, but polluter protection," Train said. "I find this deeply disturbing."
In 1988, Train was co-chairman of Conservationists for Bush, an organization that backed the candidacy of George W. Bush's father.
Train spoke at an event organized by Environment2004, which opposes Bush's environmental record. He accused Bush of weakening the Clean Air Act and said the president's record falls short of those set by former Republican presidents, from Theodore Roosevelt, who advocated creating national parks and forests, to George H.W. Bush, who supported revised standards for clean air.
The Bush-Cheney campaign defended the president's record, saying states such as New Hampshire benefit from the president's Healthy Forests Initiative. They also argued that sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions have dropped during the Bush administration.