June 24th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
14 years ago

McCain wants government to set energy example

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/06/24/campaign.wrap/art.mccain.gi.jpg caption="Sen. John McCain is pushing energy efficiency and conservation on the campaign trail."](CNN) - Sen. John McCain on Tuesday told voters that energy efficiency "should begin at home" and proposed that the federal government purchase more environmentally friendly vehicles.

"Every year the federal government buys upwards of 60,000 cars and other vehicles, not including military or law-enforcement vehicles," McCain said.

Watch: McCain unveils his energy plan

"From now on, we're going to make those civilian vehicles flex-fuel capable, plug-in hybrid or cars fueled by clean natural gas. If our great goal is to move American transportation toward lower carbon emissions, then it should start with the federal fleet."

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Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (180 Responses)
  1. Terry in El Paso

    McCain is not speaking English. He is speaking a dialect of 'wink-and-nudge-conservo-speak.'

    What he is saying is "It's ok for you to drive your gas-hogs if you can afford it." His solution is a non-solution, as usual. Let us imagine ways we could actually reduce petroleum usage:

    1. Lower speed limits (all you Westerners can stop talking about your "special" need to speed. I live in the southwest and I can drive slower. You can too.)

    2. Put a BIG gas-hog tax on any family vehicle that cannot get, say, 25 mpg (or more). Let's say 50%. Or, outlaw them altogether.

    3. Require a mechanism to be installed in every car that would limit the vehicle's maximum speed to 50 mph. Back it up with a HEFTY fine, say, confiscation of the vehicle.

    Now if McCain had any political courage, he could propose those two reforms which cost nothing and could be implemented right away. Of course, all of you would vote against him.

    June 24, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  2. sarah

    good thinking senator. now get the government to stop wasting money by selling contracts to the highest bidder, make recycling mandatory at all federal buildings, put federal prisoners to work on chain gangs fixing roads, and force congress to give up their pork. im with you all the way.

    June 24, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  3. Brandon Hillary Democrat for Mc Cain

    Hillary but never obama.
    Mc Cain/Palin 2008.

    June 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  4. Jaime

    McCain go live in Florida and wear your white loafers with black socks and drive your golf cart. Yes you are a maverick if this was the 1950's but it's the 21st century and you don't even know how to turn on a computer.

    So long Gramps!!!

    June 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  5. Wisconsin

    Yet McWar is all for drilling! A program that does nothing to make gas prices go down. Think about it in 10 years, when the oil finally hits the market, why would oil companies chose to loose money by adding to the supply???

    June 24, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  6. Mom With Two Teenagers

    He's a wealthy man because of his wealthy wife. He can wait forever for the energy crisis to be over, the housing crisis, and the war (100 years). This man scares me because there is no sense of urgency for anything. He's old. He's tired. He's lived his life. The rest of us will have to placate his ego for FOUR long years while he sits back in a rocking chair and feeds us these lines about "someday". We don't have the luxury of waiting for John McCain to do the right thing. He's a nice old man who doesn't have a clue what the rest of us are going through.

    We have to move now, and the best person for the job is the person who is thinking in terms of TODAY. That person is Barack Obama.

    June 24, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  7. Janet

    I guess it's better late than never. McSame is saying all of the word that he thinks people want to hear. But since he is league with big OIL nothing will be done to get our country free of foreign oil.

    June 24, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  8. I want a spending report from the government

    Im sorry why does the federal government need to buy $60,000 cars a year? Who drives them all?

    June 24, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  9. Frequent Flyer NYC

    The Corporate States of America!!!

    All you poor people find a bunker....cause its about to hit the fan with this guy.

    June 24, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  10. Mike

    McCain keeps beating Obama to the punch on energy.

    Let's see , drill domestically, alternative fuels, and nuclear.

    I guess Obama has no plan.

    June 24, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  11. Bob Stephens

    Hey McSame, why don't you get rid of Phil Gramm, your economic adviser, the one that helped make law, the Enron loophole, which the got the oil companies billions and billions of dollars, and is the main reason we are paying $4 + a gallon today?

    June 24, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  12. bruce FORMER REPUBLICAN FROM MA.

    A good start would be to turn out the lights when no one is home...

    You know the "old" bit, the lights are on but no one's home !!!

    OBAMA 08 & 12 ...

    I will take that long to undo the ineptness of the past Republican years... I can't believe they have piled so much debt on my grandchildren, simply, unconsionable. Please send glue, we will need that to repair our standing in the world to say nothing of the founding documents.

    June 24, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  13. Marie in California

    You go, McCain! With you all the way!

    Formerly for Hillary.....now for McCain!

    June 24, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  14. LB

    Why does the federal government need 60,000 NEW cars every year? McCain says spend money on more cars. Why not just save money and not buy any more cars for 2 years. $25,000 a car, times 60,000 cars, right there is a 1.5 million dollar savings if they don't buy NEW cars. Maybe the federal government employees should take the bus, ride their bikes, commute by train back east. Why do the Republicans say we the little people need to cut back on gas use, but then McCain turns around and says they will be buying 60,000 NEW cars on the road to use up more gas. McCain is an idiot!

    June 24, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  15. Bulldog

    Hey CNN, why don't you expose McCain by siting Executive Order 13423, Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation Management. McCain's great and enlightened suggestion is already an exectutive order.

    June 24, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  16. Chad, Wisco

    Nicole, you are exactly right. I purchased a Moped and take it to work and when I do little trips around town. It will pay for itself in 18 weeks, which is a stretch in Wisconsin for summers, but within a 2 years I will be well into savings. People want things given to them and are very unwilling to do things themselves. This isnt a dem or repub issue, its a spoiled American issue.

    June 24, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  17. Maggie, MA

    Thanks John, after listening to your energy policy I have a feeling Barack's win in November is going to be a landslide. The rumblings of the people taking their country back will be resounding and finite. We've had enough. We've had enough.

    So keep espousing your proposals for the Federal Govt., while the rest of us lick our chops on your inevitable defeat in November.

    When Barack wins in November, I will be happy for America, but mostly I'll be happy for the young men, and women who went to war on false pretenses. I'll be happy that they will no longer have a government that sends them in harms way for personal reasons.

    It will be a Happy Day.

    OBAMA 08 AND BEYOND.

    June 24, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  18. A CANUCK

    With McCain you're just going to get the "same old, same old" just like him. I can hardly wait for the debates !!!!!! Obama 2008

    June 24, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  19. Michael Lorton, Virginia

    All of a sudden, McFuel is energy orientated......now that gas is $5.00 a gallon. You are running out of gas......McCain.

    June 24, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  20. rice, bryan

    just as soon as big oil, and speculators suck the little people dry, then he will back energy alternatives. he has too many enron people in his camp to want a change.

    June 24, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  21. Ted

    Ya know, it just lacks a melodious sound to hear McCain contradict his voting record on anything environmental.

    He should be voting to increase fuel mileage to 60 mpg beginninig 2010. I'm convinced the technnology already exists for at least that much. Maybe even more like 80 mpg. And that automatically lowers the carbon emissions. Cheaper prices for gas are a useless incentive to use less of it, better fuel mileage is.

    June 24, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  22. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    How about going back to the old "T-model Ford" John McCain because that's about all he would know about energy conservation. Give me a break. McCain talking about starting at the top with the federal government creating fuel friendly vehicles. Since when has the federal government did anything but hire contractors that "RIPPED OFF" tax payers. McCain sounds more like Cheney/Halliburten than anything else. NO MORE GOVERNMENT SPENDING MCCAIN.

    June 24, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  23. Supporter

    lol.. McCain is truly sad… On one hand he opens up the drilling in eco-sensitive areas and then on the other hand he set energy standards.

    What sense does it make? Ny the time the new old comes to marked the oil consumption would have been reduced to a point where we don't need that oil.

    Typical Bush/McCain tactics.. play both sides of the coin, hoping Americans are too stupid to understand what's going on.

    I guess people who can vote for McCain are the people who don't really know what's going on, so they will eat this up.

    vote with Love of America, Vote Obama.

    June 24, 2008 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  24. Obama: Carter's 2nd Term

    I bet if McCain had Al Gore to take care of making the changes to use less energy it would happen………no….wait, that is right Al Gore is just a bunch of talk!!! He now uses more energy!!

    “In the year since Al Gore took steps to make his home more energy-efficient, the former Vice President’s home energy use surged more than 10%, according to the Tennessee Center for Policy Research.

    The Tennessee Center for Policy Research, a Nashville-based free market think tank and watchdog organization, obtained information about Gore’s home energy use through a public records request to the Nashville Electric Service.”

    June 24, 2008 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  25. Peggy - Tx

    Another insignificant proposal from McCain that will do nothing but makes for a good sound bite. I am starting to feel sorry for McCain. Little money, No vision for American. Obama dominates the news every day with seemingly little effort, whereas McCain is just simply boring, his words are tired, and he lacks conviction.

    June 24, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
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