Energy and anger

October 26, 2010 04:43

Cap and trade is becoming a hot issue in places like New Mexico, with voter wrath aimed at House members who supported the scheme

Alisa Harris at WORLD Magazine


In a state where the oil and gas industry provides 23,000 jobs and almost one-fifth of the revenue in the State General Fund, cap and trade may decide the close race between Pearce and Democratic incumbent Harry Teague.

James Taylor, senior fellow for environmental policy at the Heartland Institute, predicted, “Harry Teague’s vote for cap and trade will most likely be his undoing.”

People are angry, Pearce says, and with a passion he didn’t see when he campaigned in previous elections. Voters’ fears go beyond policy beefs to a belief that the system is failing—that leaders are ignoring the Constitution, that they’re spending more than taxpayers have, who may not be able to retire or pay for their houses.

New Mexican voters are especially angry about cap and trade.

Pearce, who says “even the scientists that are in charge” don’t believe in man-made climate change, has aired an ad saying that Teague’s vote on the “cap and trade tax” means “fewer jobs.”

Nationwide, other Republican candidates are hammering their opponents on cap and trade in a strategy that seems to be paying off. In the Delaware Senate primary, Christine O’Donnell beat her opponent Mike Castle after slamming his support for cap and trade. In Wisconsin, Republican senatorial candidate Ron Johnson scoffed at man-made climate change and posited that the world’s warming is due to “sunspot activity,” all while putting Democratic incumbent Russ Feingold 9 points behind him.

Andy Barr, the GOP candidate for Kentucky’s 6th District, has gained on Democratic incumbent Ben Chandler while promising to fight cap and trade. Kentucky senatorial candidate Rand Paul has released a campaign ad that shows a red “Jack Conway Approved” stamp slamming onto a document marked “Cap and Trade” while a Barack Obama impersonator says he can count on Jack Conway to approve higher taxes. In the West Virginia Senate race, Republican John Raese now has a 5-point lead over Democratic Gov. Joe Manchin. A Raese ad slams Manchin for signing a bill that it calls “Obama’s Cap and Trade bill, West Virginia style.”


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