RedState commits a major misread of a Bloomberg article yesterday in which UN Foundation President (and former Clinton climate negotiator) Tim Wirth lays out the most salient strategy for passage of a climate bill in the U.S. Congress. Bending the conversation for his own ideology (and misspelling “Wirth” three times in the process) Caleb Howe suggests — no, repeats in italics — that Senator Wirth thinks the bill is too broad as a matter of policy (not political strategy) and would not support the bill as such.
Presumably Howe knows the difference between when someone in the political sphere is discussing practical strategy (i.e. a “process story”) and when they’re advocating a position, but he doesn’t exhibit that precision here. Though the Bloomberg piece isn’t very clear, logic would indicate the former in this case, particularly when, in a easily retrievable statement on the UN Foundation website, Wirth clearly says, “[Waxman-Markey] is the first step toward an energy policy for the 21st century. It will lead to technical innovation, good domestic jobs, less use of oil and more protection of the world we live in.” Sounds like support to me.
To be more clear, Wirth sent a letter around today in which he wrote:
Legislation in the Senate is the second step. The Senate will require a different combination to unlock the necessary votes to pass this critical legislation this year. As noted in the Bloomberg story, I have repeatedly argued that to win passage, legislation must include a number of important elements: very strong efficiency standards, agriculture-related provisions, a package for nuclear power, a carbon emissions standard for new power generation, and a strong natural gas piece.
In other words, because “Senate passage of legislation is absolutely essential for U.S. security, economic and climate interests,” the Senate needs to do whatever it can to get the strongest bill it can passed. Due to the recent developments that Howe mentions in the first few words of the post, that might mean trimming the fat — as Wirth advocates.