"Documenting Votes From ‘The Most Anti-Clean Energy, Do-Nothing, Pro-Pollution Congress In History’"
by Luke Morgan
A new report released this week breaks down 223 of the 315 votes the House of Representatives has made against clean energy and in favor of the fossil fuel industry over the last two years.
The report, released by the Democratic staff of the House Natural Resources Committee, details 127 votes to block or cut regulations in the coal, oil, and gas industries. For example, even after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill exposed serious flaws in environmental protections in offshore oil drilling, House Republicans voted 47 times to weaken those protections while encouraging the expansion of offshore drilling.
The House of Representatives has solidified itself as “the most anti-clean energy, do-nothing, pro-pollution Congress in history,” said Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Ed Markey, the ranking member of the Natural Resources Committee.
Here’s a brief breakdown of the Republican votes:
- 42 votes against clean energy and energy efficiency: Despite GOP attempts to demonize government support of clean energy, 70% of voters say the government should be doing more to promote solar energy.
- 54 votes to provide gifts and subsidies to the Oil and Gas Industries: Meanwhile, according to OpenSecrets, 89% of oil and gas lobbying dollars have gone to Republicans this election cycle.
- 127 Votes to dismantle health, safety, and environmental regulations on fossil fuels: The GOP majority voted 95 times to undermine the Clean Air Act, even though it prevented 160,000 premature deaths in 2010, according to the EPA.
A more detailed explanation of the votes can be found in the full report. The staffers noted that House Republicans wasted 108 hours of floor time voting on these bills, many of which they knew had no chance of passing the Senate or being signed into law by President Obama.
Included in House Republicans’ intransigence on environmental issues is Vice-Presidential Nominee Rep. Paul Ryan, who voted 100% of the time with House Republicans.
The report also details that the House’s failure to extend the Wind Production Tax Credit has led to more than 2,700 layoffs in the sector. Climate Progress previously reported that this failure could ultimately lead to the shedding of up to 37,000 jobs from the industry.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Democrats keep a running database of all the anti-environment votes taken, available here.