Politics

EPA chief Lisa Jackson cancels appearance at Senate Democrat fundraiser

UPDATE: Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson has canceled her appearance at a Democrat fundraiser hours after Politico published a story detailing that engagement.

Jackson was scheduled to appear at a breakfast in Manhattan Thursday to benefit the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. An EPA spokesman noted that the appearance was scheduled before the oil spill occurred.

Jackson was on her way back from a visit to the Gulf Coast when she received the news, according to Politico.

“She’s not going,” said Allyn Brooks-LaSure, a spokesman at the agency, adding that “her priority has continued to be protecting human health and the environment” after the spill.

ORIGINAL STORY: See update above.

Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson will be featured at a fundraiser for Senate Democrats in Manhattan next week even as the Obama administration battles what could be the worst environmental [intlink id="1079743" type="post"]disaster[/intlink] in American history, according to Politico.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee breakfast is scheduled for June 4. New Jersey public relations star Michael Kempner is hosting the event, according to an email sent to potential attendees by Rafi Jafri, former fundraiser for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine.

Donors and attendees will apparently be able to ask Jackson about progress in the Gulf of Mexico:

The breakfast “promises to be intimate, so each of you will have a real opportunity to get to know and to speak to Lisa about issues of concern to you and our nation,” the email obtained by Politico read.

“From climate change to leading the green economy, Lisa is the point person for the Obama Administration for creating a more secure, sound and robust environmental future for America. … She is also widely seen as one of the great ‘stars’ of the Obama administration,” Jafri writes in the e-mail.

President Barack Obama is scheduled to [intlink id="1080461" type="post"]visit the affected areas[/intlink] on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico Friday, his second visit since the oil began gushing from the ocean floor 35 days ago.

The administration is facing increased criticism for its response to the disaster. Democratic strategist James Carville and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal are among those voicing concerns about the preparedness of the federal government.