The bill to combat climate change that he wrote was passed by the House in 2009 but died in the Senate, and President Obama has given up on efforts to push it through. Mr. Waxman has also spent years trying to strengthen the powers of the Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency, but those efforts are under fire from the Republicans who control the House.
Mr. Waxman — whose 33rd Congressional District hugs the Southern California coast and includes Malibu, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica — has long been a House leader. For five years beginning in 1979, he was chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Health and the Environment. He often butted heads on environmental issues with the chairman of the full committee, John D. Dingell of Michigan. In 2008, Mr. Waxman defeated Mr. Dingell in a secret House vote to become chairman of the full committee. After the Republicans regained control of the House two years later, he became the committee’s ranking member. (NYT, 1/30/2014)