Protesters outside Koch meeting at Rancho Las Palmas Resort, Rancho Mirage, CA
After the Koch brothers organized top Republican billionaires in Palm Springs to plan their 2012 agenda, the district’s representative, Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-CA), embraced their denial of the threat of greenhouse pollution. In 2009, Mack was one of eight Republicans who voted for sweeping climate legislation. The small group of science-enlightened conservatives were blasted by Republican operatives as “cap and traitors,” “Republican turncoats,” and “libtards,” but easily won re-election against Tea Party candidates. However, Politico reports that Mack will support a bill to outlaw action against global warming drafted by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) and Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK):
The Southern California lawmaker will endorse a draft bill to stymie climate rules from Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) “due to her long-standing concerns regarding the role of the EPA and the overly burdensome California standards,” her office told Politico. Upton and Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) on Wednesday unveiled the draft bill, which would repeal the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act and hamstring California’s authority to issue stricter vehicle emission standards than the federal government.
The Upton-Inhofe bill is a radical act of science denial on behalf of fossil polluters, preventing the Environmental Protection Agency from even “taking into consideration the emission of a green- house gas due to concerns regarding possible climate change.” It would reverse not only efforts to track and limit greenhouse pollution, but reverse the Supreme-Court-mandated scientific finding that global warming is dangerous to the American public.
Mack is not the only Republican to abandon the health and safety of her constituents to appease oil and coal polluters. Upton himself argued in 2009 that “climate change is a serious problem.” Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL), and GOP presidential contenders Tim Pawlenty, Mike Huckabee, and Newt Gingrich have all flip-flopped on the climate threat, even while the world grows hotter, more polluted, and more dangerous.
In May, 2009, Bono Mack said that building a clean-energy economy and protecting our planet was an “issue that transcends political party.” It seems it doesn’t transcend the toxic reach of Charles and David Koch, however.