Linda Steil and Justin Amash are keeping some strange company this final week of the primary season: Dave Agema. This happy trio from West Michigan are the only locals to step and sign the No Climate Tax pledge.
This Pledge, a creature of Americans for Prosperity, is part of their campaign against the Climate Security Act, aka the Lieberman-Warner bill. The bill would have instituted a cap-and-trade approach to carbon emissions, but was withdrawn by Senate leadership on June 7 — remember that date.
So our trio fell for a lobbying campaign? Well not quite. Although 54 senators opposed the Lieberman-Warner measure, only one, Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) took the pledge. We are in the territory of fringe Republican politics, here, as the pledge itself makes clear:
I … pledge to the taxpayers of the State of Michigan that I will oppose any legislation relating to climate change that includes a net increase in state or local government revenue.
Not a dime more to save the planet. The categorical breadth of the pledge, its refusal to consider any measure at all is a stunning sample of a failure to engage. There is a deep irresponsibility at work here, one that elevates a no-tax creed to the summit. In a word this is political idolatry.
Yet almost as incomprehensible, their signed statement is up on the web (see pledges below the fold).
One wants to stop and ask, “What were they thinking?” Read the rest of this entry »