The Wall Street Journal today reports on the political unpopularity of the Environmental Protection Agency, its regulatory assault on the economy, and its polarizing administrator, Lisa Jackson. From “Environment Chief Caught in the Campaign Crossfire“:

[For] Republicans and for some Democrats, the EPA is a symbol of a government that does too much and discourages job-creating investments. “It represents government out of control,” said Rep. Sanford Bishop, (D., Ga.) when asked to describe his constituents’ view of the agency.

Ms. Jackson has emerged as one of the Obama administration’s most energetic regulators. During the past 18 months, the agency has proposed 42 “significant” regulations, according to OMB Watch, a left-leaning watchdog group. That compares with 16 in the first 18 months of the EPA during the George W. Bush administration. The government defines regulations as “significant” if they have an annual impact on the economy of $100 million or more or meet certain other criteria, such as raising new legal issues or interfering with other agencies’ actions.The new rules seek to reduce ozone pollution from factories and cars; coal ash waste from power plants; storm-water runoff from construction sites; greenhouse-gas emissions from cars; and mercury emissions from industrial boilers.

We can just imagine the White House political team, saying, “Gee, Lisa. You’re kind of, well, toxic these days. Can’t you do something to lower your profile, maybe get out of town before the election?”

EPA news release, “EPA Administrator Jackson to Travel to China“: “WASHINGTON – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa P. Jackson will travel to China from October 9 through October 14. This is the administrator’s first official visit to China, where she will highlight and build on a wide range of joint efforts aimed at addressing current and emerging environmental challenges, from sustainability to greenhouse gas pollution.”

Also at the WSJ today, Kim Strassel examines the campaign of Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), who ran afoul of his district’s economic interests when he supported Waxman-Markey. The column is, “The Cap-and-Trade Crackup.”