Friday, July 14, 2006

Cutting Emissions, Saving the Environment

Senator Lieberman wrote an Op-Ed in yesterday's New York Post, insisting on the need for America to break its dependence on foreign oil and take drastic measures to cut carbon emissions:

Our dependence on oil is sapping America's independence. We must diversify the fuels that power our nation, or risk ceding our nation's power to rulers separated from us by a world in geography and by centuries in values...

It's time to face facts. The era of big oil for America has to end...

With a bipartisan group of 27 other senators, representing every region of the country, I have introduced the 'Seat America Free Act.' It starts by setting a national goal -- namely, to cut America's oil consumption by 10 million barrels a day over the next 25 years...

And before anyone tries to argue that Lieberman is late coming to this party or just trying to cover himself for the Dem primary, you can see that he has been pushing similar legislation since well before this campaign got geared up, and anyone who recalls his 2004 Presidential bid will recall that his energy policy was a centerpiece of his campaign then as well.

This is the second bill he has introduced on the issue in the past year. The GOP leadership stonewalled the first bill by referring it to the Finance Committee rather than the Energy Committee due to some tax provisions in the bill, because the GOP leadership knew it would pass the Energy Committee. So Lieberman wrote a new bill in May that Frist couldn't knock down on a technicality and which subsequently referred to the Energy Committee, where it had hearings three weeks ago.

And even before that, a similar bill that Lieberman sponsored in 2003 did make it to the floor, but lost 55-43. Remember that - if Lieberman is so cozy with the Republican leaders, why did they block his biggest legislative initiative of the past year? And if he's not a real Democrat, why has he been the only Senator to have legislation going through the pipeline that would take real steps to set higher fuel standards for all vehicles? No other Senator has produced a bill that made it to the Senate floor on this issue in the past 5 years.

Maybe that's why Senator Lieberman is endorsed by the Sierra Club. He has called Bush's leadership on emissions "feeble" and said that the Bush energy policy was "mired in crude oil." Ned Lamont should remember that the next time he says Lieberman won't stand up to Bush's failed policies.

Oh, and on that energy bill that Lieberman voted for that Lamont so loved to bring up in debate:

  1. Calling it the "Bush/Cheney/Lieberman" bill is laughable, since Lieberman never attached his name to the bill in any way.
  2. Others who voted in favor of the bill include such Republican lapdogs as Barack Obama, Patty Murray, Dan Inouye, Barbara Mikulski, Carl Levin, Tom Harkin, and Debbie Stabenow. Not to mention perhaps the Senate's most passionate advocate for environmental protection and energy independence, Maria Cantwell.
  3. Lieberman had actually co-sponsored many amendments to it, including several to strip the bill of some its environmentally unsound provisions, drastically cut carbon emissions, force Bush to release the full EPA report which his administration had censored, and add language forcing the federal government to finally recognize climate change.

Yes, he was the only "New England Democrat" to vote for the bill. Then again, there are only 6 New England Democrats (Lieberman, Dodd, Leahy, Reed, Kerry, and Kennedy), 7 if you count Jeffords (and in fairness, I do), so that’s not exactly an impressive statement. More significant than the fact that he voted differently than the handful of Dems from New England is that he voted with a majority of the Democratic caucus on the bill. The bill's tax breaks for the energy industry were a mistake, as Lieberman has said repeatedly. But he voted for it because the bill would provide jobs for people in Connecticut, save Connecticut residents hundreds of millions of dollars on their electric bills, and provide record incentives for alternative and clean energy sources.

Environmental protection and energy policy are quite possibly the greatest issues that America will face in the coming decades. And Lieberman has a proven record of working to protect the environment and end our dependence on foreign oil.

Update: Major zone-out in my initial post, as I neglected to include Kerry and Kennedy in the list of NE Dems. I corrected the error. Sorry folks - I was rushing to finish it on my break.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lieberman's 'Judas Kiss' Could Seal His Primary Fate

Great article on "the kiss" in the Independent (UK). Joe had the gall to lie about it, denying that it ever happened despite the clear video evidence.

If it walks like a Republican and talks like a Republican its...

Joe Lieberman - America's Fox News Democrat

7/14/2006 8:07 AM  
Anonymous MalleusMaleficarum said...

If Lieberman is now trying to move to the left of Lamont - on the environment - then you can bet that he believes he has lost the primary. It would be fascinating to know how he reached the decision to flaunt his environmental credentials at this point in his campaign. The next thing he will probably try to do is to remind voters that he voted in favor of the death penalty for minors. That is right. Joe Lieberman voted to put to death people who for all practical purposes the law regards as children. The United States was the only industrialized nation that permitted the execution of minors until the law was struck down in 2005, and Joe Lieberman supported what is now considered to be a barbaric practice. He voted IN FAVOR of the death penalty for crimes committed when an individual is under the age of 18. (S.1607, 11/8/1993) Why on earth he now wants to attempt to distort his own record is anybody's guess, but it is probably because he does not want to leave the Senate. It is even possible that he thinks he can fool enough of the voters in Connecticut into electing him in a field divided between 3 or 4 rivals in November. That, too, is unlikely. With three more months to familiarize themselves with his record, a comeback from the political boneyard will be deeply improbable.

7/14/2006 8:31 AM  
Blogger SeedFreak said...

What are Lamont's credentials on the enviroment?

What has he actually done? How many decades past did he start suing polluters and forcing them to decrease and stop their dumping of wastes into the waters.

Please put in those dates and what he did--I'm surte he's got at least a twenty year history of it--so let's have some dates and some verifiable work from Ned going back so far.

Let's have it. Put up links to make your case please. Do it.

How long is Ned's history of fighting polluters? How long? When?

7/14/2006 10:05 AM  
Blogger The Skipster said...

Only 4 New England Dems? Not quite-Ted Kennedy and John Kerry would not like to be read out of New England, and Mr. Jeffords organizes with the Democratic Caucus.So Joe is a little out of step here.

7/14/2006 12:47 PM  
Blogger matt said...

Good catch. I corrected the error.

7/14/2006 1:01 PM  

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