June 13th, 2009
01:38 PM ET
9 years ago

Republicans target climate bill

Rep. Mike Pence gets 'The Last Word' on CNN's 'State of the Union with John King' this Sunday. Tune in at 9 a.m. ET.

Rep. Mike Pence gets 'The Last Word' on CNN's 'State of the Union with John King' this Sunday. Tune in at 9 a.m. ET.

(CNN) - Indiana Rep. Mike Pence on Saturday touted the Republicans' omnibus, “all-of-the-above” energy plan, while warning that proposals from Democrats would lead to higher energy prices and massive job losses.

Pence, the chairman of the House GOP American Energy Solutions Group, and other House Republicans this week introduced the American Energy Act, a plan they say will reduce energy costs, create jobs and help clean up the environment.

The plan calls for expanded exploration of domestic sources for oil and natural gas, a commitment to nuclear energy, investments in renewable and alternative energy technology and incentives for the public to focus on conservation.

“The American Energy Act is the comprehensive energy solution this country desperately needs to achieve energy independence, create good jobs and help our environment,” Pence said in the weekly Republican address.

Republicans have criticized the Democrats' proposal to curb greenhouse emissions using the so-called “cap-and-trade” program, saying it amounts to an energy tax.

A bill drafted by Democrats sets a target for cutting greenhouse gases by 17 percent from their 2005 levels by 2020. An auction for the credits, which effectively starts in 2014, allows businesses that meet the new energy standard to sell their credits to those who are still working to become more energy efficient. The theory is that as businesses become more energy efficient and less polluting, the market in pollution credits will help bring down emissions.

According to an analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, when the auction goes into full effect it could yield an average of about $100 billion a year. Democrats argue this will spur a new marketplace for clean energy technologies and generate new "green" jobs.

Most House Republicans contend that as utility companies work to meet the new standards, they will pass on the costs of the new mandates to consumers.

“This national energy tax amounts to an economic declaration of war on America's families, small businesses and family farms. The American people know we can do better,” Pence said.

Rep. Mike Pence gets "The Last Word" on CNN's "State of the Union with John King" this Sunday. Tune in at 9 a.m. ET.

Filed under: Energy • Mike Pence
soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. Lori, Houston Texas

    “This national energy tax amounts to an economic declaration of war on America's families, small businesses and family farms. The American people know we can do better,” Pence said.

    As opposed to the "national energy tax" last summer when gas cost $4-5 a gallon and families had to give up food and medical care for gas?

    Hey GOPosaurs – stop telling me it's raining while you're peeing on my leg. We are not stupid. We showed you that in Novemeber. Now shut up and get to work fixing the problems you guys caused us since the 1970s.

    June 13, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  2. Josh- Rochester, MN

    Democrats taxing Americans leading to welfare and the inevitable subservience to the government.

    June 13, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  3. Donkey Party

    The party of no still has no new ideas, just the same old reheated gobbledygoo of the Bush years. How about one of these GOP nobodies explain where all that nuclear waste is going to go? Just more reason to despise the right-wingers even more.

    June 13, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  4. tee

    I am so sick of the republicans!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 13, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  5. Joe the Troll

    Yeah, a commitment to alternative energy.....AFTER the oil runs out.

    June 13, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  6. Jen

    The Democrats plan is a good plan. Perhaps twenty years ago the Republican's plan would've been feasible, but climate change is a very serious problem that we have to take strong, meaningful action on now. This isn't something that we as a nation can cheap out on.

    June 13, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  7. Denna

    Why don't these d@mn Republicans come up with some viable solutions instead of complaining all the time. We are in this mess because in 8 years they didn't have one single decent idea. Now, suddenly they are so bright. And where is that supposed alternative budget they had to answer President Obama's? The Republicans are so scared that President Obama will clean up this mess, they can't even get on with any real business. For once I wish they would cooperate. And to the conservative minions who permeate this blog: No one hates Bush. Liberals are not haters, we are patriots who don't like what happened to America. God Bless President Obama.

    June 13, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  8. david phillips

    Where does the nuclear waste go? People talk about nuclear power but no one wants a reactor in their back yard or a waste dump either.

    June 13, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  9. Ray

    This country, and the world for that matter, is at a crisis. We have grown too much for our oil reserves to continue to support us, yet the middle class has already taken too many hits from Republican economic policies, which the Clinton administration gladly supported. We must act now, while the time and atmosphere is right and more toward a greener future.

    We need to adapt a two part strategy for our energy needs. First, continue with our oil, gas and coal usage for the immediate future. Pricing these resources out of the range of the average American is just another blow we can't take. Second, and while we have an administration who understands the need, we need a policy that helps green energy production forge ahead. Enact tax policies for companies to move ahead with clean energy strategies. Enact tax policies that help average Americans buy into clean energy.

    Let's look to countries that have already invested in solar, wind, geothermal and nuclear energy and take the best ideas and put them into play here in America.

    We just need to be smart and be realistic.

    June 13, 2009 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  10. james

    Eve though I am a capitalist, I don't have much confidence that the free market will achieve the pollution reductions that are seriously needed. We have to set collective goals to do so and our national government is in the best position to do so.
    I don't recall the energy planned being pursued by congress as the "Democratic" plan, yet this latest proposal is the "Republican" energy plan. As if it is only for Republicans.
    Can the members of congress not even engage in discussions and negotiations among themselves? Can't we have a true "American" energy plan?

    June 13, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  11. ib

    This cap and trade bill is stupid. With the problems in Iran we should be and should have been drilling in this country but Obama; democrats and environmentalists have stopped us from doing just that. I'm all for alternative energy but we are a long way from being there and should try to keep energy costs down to a reasonable level until then. I wonder who the far left wingnuts will now blame for the high costs of gas which is one big reason we are in this mess. Oh I know it will still be Bush's fault and Obama will say he handed the high prices by the previous adminstration. Yeah sure hypocrite!!!

    June 13, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  12. Ken, Vail, AZ

    On this issue, as with health care, climate change, and most other issues facing this country over the past few decades, the GOP are trying to perpetuate business-as-usual. We've had a free ride for far too long and it is going to cost to resolve these problems. There can be no gain without some pain.

    June 13, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  13. George

    besides hot air from the GOP do they even have a clue

    June 13, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  14. marlene

    Drill Baby, Drill!! And 100 new nuclear reactors – at what cost, which won't be ready for 10 years, AND what are they going to do with the waste, that already no state wants. Talk about NO plan??? Marlene in Mich

    June 13, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  15. mjm

    The Republicans have the better plan on this one.

    June 13, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  16. Peter E

    The argument that further domestic drilling will reduce energy costs and reduce foreign dependence is flawed because it ignores basic facts: oil prices are set by the international market, not the domestic market alone, and hence no matter how much we want to increase production OPEC will outgun us by just reducing their production. Also, our own oil companies sell our oil on the international market. There is no law requiring them to sell domestic production to the domestic market only, and they don't. They even admit that they set their oil prices to international value and they sell oil to foreign countries. Giving these oil companies more allowance for domestic production will do jack squat for energy prices or the American taxpayer. The only thing it will do is further the profits of these corrupt, unpatriotic oil magnates!

    June 13, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  17. Limbaugh is a Liberal

    You want to reduce energy cost? How about using less energy! You don't need to set your AC to 50F in the middle of summer, and sometimes you could just walk one block down the street instead of driving your SUV every time. And perhaps you could use the night for sleeping instead of keeping your lights, your computer, and your stereo system on.
    But politicians never advocate less energy use. That would hurt their oil buddies' profits.

    June 13, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  18. Charlotte

    Those morons wouldn't know sensible and responsible government if it bit them in the butt. HIGH TIME clean energy was aggressively encouraged and the oil companies paid their fair share and stopped holding the country hostage to their obscene profits, at the cost of our very world we live in. Ignore the corporate and Republican rants, they are just desperate for their beloved and lucrative status quo.

    June 13, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  19. Joanna

    I think Obama needs to make the reduction even bigger. The GOP is worried about money, but with no planet left, money really will not be an issue. I think obama needs to do way more on health care as well. The GOP isn't going to support anything, so lets do thing right this time before our chance for change is over. Change things all the way, not half ass.

    June 13, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  20. Ready Kilowatt

    Yup Mike and we might even get "breathable" air in Indianapolis, Cincinnati and other cities where coal still reigns supreme in power generation and rates remain under half of both coasts.

    Pence is a prime example of just what is wrong with the GOP. Pander, offer no solution and just keep saying "no". I'd be curious if this cretin's constituents are "whacko" enough to give him another term.

    Yes Mike, "The American People know we can do better". We did in 2008 and will in 2010.

    Times like these make it clear to this born Hoosier why he left Indiana.

    June 13, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  21. Marty, Grand Rapids

    For national security, jobs and enviromental reasons, we need to move away from an oil based economy. Wether we do that by cap and trade, an energy tax or by mandate, we need to change. Change is going to cost money until we have moved far enough in the new direction. Anyone who supports bau is supporting the greed of large energy companies over the needs of our country.

    Think about it. Jobs created using solar or wind energy is money that stays in the US instead of transfering our wealth to oil rich countries. We will never pump enough oil out of our own soil to meet our current domestic needs and as long as we are dependent on other countries for our energy needs, we are not an independent nation (aka our foriegn policy is dictated by our energy needs).

    June 13, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  22. Ted Tartaglia

    This Republican proposal deserves consideration, however, Republicans are now saying that their proposals are a better way. If that is true, why did they not enact legislation to support their better ideas?

    Perhaps I am too cynical but it seems that Republicans are now proposing alternatives to all of President Obama's proposals saying that their way is better. Is it really or are they trying to preserve breaks for their fat cat business partners?

    I'm surprised that the Republicans claim to know what the American people want since the voters thoroughly rejected the Republicans last November. Do Republicans really know what the American people want or they just grasping at straws. I think it is the latter.

    June 13, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  23. Splat!~

    We could have had fuel efficient automobiles decades ago but for the conservatives. Now the American automakers are in the crapper. And we are perhaps now too dependant on fossil fuels to ever be weaned. You've proven to be short sighted and driven by convenience and greed.

    June 13, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  24. HEIDI

    Please, I am so tired of the GOP's ranting and ravings about nothing. They offer nothing that will help this country. Instead of whinning and crying about how you can find nothing of substances to fight Pres Obama on, why don't you try and be grown ups and help turn the country around.

    June 13, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  25. LOL WUT?!

    "The plan calls for expanded exploration of domestic sources for oil and natural gas...and incentives for the public to focus on conservation."

    Uhhhhh, hypocritical much?

    June 13, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
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