Today, conservative extremist Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) engaged in a one-man debate whether corporate America is good or evil. The Republican Party’s attempts to characterize the Waxman-Markey green economy legislation as economic catastrophe have been neutered, as the bill has gained the support of a broad coalition of corporate America, poverty advocates, labor unions, and environmentalists.
In a confused monologue, Shimkus attempts to follow new Republican talking points and portray himself as a defender of the little guy against corporate greed. But he can’t stop himself from also praising the corporations as his friends:
We’re fighting for the ratepayer. This debate is: “Who protects the ratepayer?” The corporate titans are my friends! I’m a Caterpillar supporter. I’m an Exelon supporter. I’m an Ameren supporter. A lot of these companies that have negotiated deals, they support me. But I know that they’re in the room to protect shareholder wealth, the wealth of the bond holders, the wealth of the stockholders. And that’s okay.
Caterpillar ($54,250), Exelon ($48,749), and Ameren ($39,500) are indeed some of Shimkus’s top contributors. But unlike Shimkus, an ideological global warming denier, these “corporate titans” recognize the reality of the threat of climate change and the need for a new clean energy economy. Caterpillar and Exelon are members of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a corporate-environmentalist coalition supporting Waxman-Markey, and even coal-powered Ameren supports global warming pollution mandates.