WASHINGTON (May 13, 2009)—Charles Hurley, CEO of the highway safety group Mothers Against Drunk Driving, has withdrawn his name from consideration as the next head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Hurley declined comment on his reasons for withdrawing, but his nomination drew fire from both liberal and conservative commentators. Environmentalists claimed he would work against tougher fuel efficiency standards for vehicles, citing MADD's ties to various auto makers, while some auto industry advocates insisted he would champion draconian highway safety laws.
When the Obama administration announced Hurley's nomination in April, Charles Cannon, president and CEO of the Rubber Manufacturers Association, called it “a strong signal that this administration shares the tire manufacturing industry's commitment to safety.”
Before joining MADD, Hurley held leadership positions with the National Safety Council and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.