Battle Lines Being Drawn on Biden Climate Plan

The Biden administration’s climate change Executive actions have drawn fire from Republicans in confirmation hearings, on Twitter, and in conservative media.  The opposition arguments focused on partisanship, process, security, and jobs.  The Republicans argued that the President’s order “takes a sledgehammer to the economy” and was politically motivated to hurt schools in red states and threatened to sue.  Senate Republicans blamed climate leaders at the White House.  For example, four Republican Senators voted against Governor Jennifer Granholm for Energy Secretary, even though they say she is qualified, in protest over the President’s clean energy agenda, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Why This Matters:  It is really rich to call ending subsidies and other government goodies for fossil fuel companies an “attack” on kids and the economy.  It also ignores the market forces that are at work — clean energy is creating more jobs than it is supplanting.  Just like the COVID stimulus, clean energy policies that address climate change are very popular with the public.  Similarly, the only trick is to not move so far to the left that Senator Joe Manchin, who represents coal country, can’t go along.  

Twitter Ranting

Here’s a sample of the lies and hyperbole the Republicans were spouting about the Biden climate policies.

  • It’s Divisive: Senator John Barrasso in a USA Today op/ed said, “We need unity, but handing out pink slips won’t unite red states and blue states. And Biden’s orders won’t have measurable impact on climate change.”
  • It’s Risky To Energy Industry: Senator Lisa Murkowski said in a tweet, “President Biden’s recent EOs targeting resource development puts the energy industry at great risk.”
  • It Threatens Our Energy Security: Senator Kevin Cramer said in a tweet, “@POTUS banning energy development on federal lands would increase the deficit, hurt state and tribal budgets, and make the United States more reliant on foreign producers. Our bill with @SenLummis supports schools and workers, and protects America’s energy security.”
  • It Hurts Conservation Funding: Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith tweeted,@POTUS actions to stop oil & gas production will cut well-paying jobs & royalty revenues that allow states like MS to fund conservation projects. The Conservation Funding Protection Act would protect jobs, energy exploration & conservation efforts along the @msgulfcoast.”
  • Increase Energy Costs and Accidents: Senator Kevin Cramer said in a tweet, ” Eliminating the Keystone XL Pipeline will raise emissions, energy costs, the risk of transportation accidents, and the number of Americans without a job.”

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