Bush Operative Marcus Peacock To Run GOP Senate Budget Staff

Marcus PeacockNow that Republicans in the House are in charge of the appropriations process, Senate Republicans have hired a Bush-era specialist to guarantee anti-regulatory budgets. Congress is under a tight deadline to fund the government, as the budget continuation passed in the lame duck session expires March 4. House Republicans are relying on a passel of corporate lobbyists to set the agenda, and now Senate Budget Committee ranking member Jeff Sessions (R-AL) has hired former George W. Bush official Marcus Peacock as the Republican staff director, Politico’s Darren Samuelsohn reports.

Marcus C. Peacock was a top official at both the Bush OMB and EPA. From 2001 until August 2005, he served as the Associate Director for Natural Resources, Energy and Science at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under John Graham. While at OMB, Peacock created the Performance Assessment Rating Tool (PART), a complex assessment system by which the OMB exerts authority over every action of executive branch agencies. PART was one of several tools used to centralize and politicize the executive branch under White House control during the Bush presidency.

Peacock then became the EPA’s “regulatory policy officer,” a position created in January 2007 by executive order to be the liaison between EPA and OIRA for regulatory reviews and discussions. “Graham henchman” Peacock tried to shutter EPA’s library system, politicized the air-quality-standard process, and appeared to have been involved in the firing of Region V Administrator Mary Gade over a dispute with Dow Chemical.

Peacock also served in the OMB during the first Bush administration during the 1980s, and was top staffer for Bud Shuster (R-PA) in the Transportation Committee before joining George W. Bush administration.

Peacock now oversees the Pew Charitable Trusts initiative Subsidyscope — a comprehensive analysis of federal spending. In December, Peacock was appointed by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) to the Commission on Key National Indicators.