12.31.2009 0

Too Hot Not To Note: Graham says hes ready to make a deal on climate change legislation

  • On: 01/08/2010 09:44:48
  • In: Energy Crisis, Global Warming Fraud, and the Environment

  • ALG Editor’s Note: In the following featured article from the Charleston Business Journal, Mike Fitts shows that Lindsey Graham is willing to put politics before the business community.

    Graham says he’s ready to make a deal on climate change legislation

    By Mike Fitts

    [email protected]

    Sen. Lindsey Graham is ready to be the 60th Senate vote to get the climate change and energy bill passed, he told a Midlands audience Tuesday at Harbison State Forest.

    “Since they’ve got no Republicans but me, business is open,” Graham said.

    Graham has been criticized by his own party for pursuing bipartisan resolutions on such issues as illegal immigration and possible filibusters of judicial nominees. And he believes that the cap-and-trade bills being debated this year are another occasion to do so, he told the audience at a forestry conference hosted by the S.C. Wildlife Federation.

    He said he has worked with Democrats, including Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., to craft a bill he can support.

    Graham pointed to the health care legislation currently in Congress as an example of poor ideas that can thrive when just one party runs the legislative process. Doing the same thing on climate bills would be “a dead-end road,” Graham said.

    Obstruction is not an option, Graham said, because, if a bill is not passed, President Barack Obama can instruct the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate carbon as a pollutant.

    Better that Congress craft a compromise than Obama’s White House write the new rules alone, Graham said.

    Graham said he believes that Earth is warming considerably and that increased carbon emissions can’t be good for the climate. A good climate bill will improve the environment and increase energy security, he said.

    “You don’t have to agree with Al Gore to get where I’m at,” he said.

    Graham wants to see measures in the bill that make it easier for the nuclear power industry to expand in the United States, and he pointed to South Carolina’s considerable assets in the sector. France gets the majority of its power from nuclear, Graham noted.
    “Surely we can be as bold as the French,” he said.

    He also said any energy and climate bill he would support must have approval for more domestic drilling rights for oil and natural gas. That would be politically palatable in the Senate, Graham said, and could provide a new revenue stream for states that might have considerable offshore deposits, such as South Carolina.

    The bill also should have measures to protect from utility price spikes and could be curtailed if emerging economic powers such as China and India do not strive to curb emissions, he said.

    The state has considerable energy assets that would benefit from a good piece of energy and climate legislation, Graham said. He noted General Electric’s wind turbine manufacturing in the Upstate and the biomass potential of the Interstate 95 corridor.

    The United States has to grasp this opportunity for energy leadership, Graham said.

    “If we fail on climate change and energy, where will our new jobs come from to pay our Social Security and Medicare bills?” he asked.

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