Credulous ‘former advisors’ notwithstanding, no, Bush is not going to help on climate legislation
This, from Greenwire (sub rqd), made me laugh:
Would President Bush sign a global warming bill into law before leaving office one year from now? …
Ken Mehlman, head of Bush’s 2004 re-election bid and former chairman of the Republican National Committee, told reporters Friday that he would urge the White House to support legislation that sets mandatory limits on U.S. heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions.
Bush’s signature on such a bill would make sense, Mehlman said …
Wait a minute! Isn’t Mehlman a notorious party hack? What the hell is …
"… an appropriate next step," said Mehlman, now a Washington attorney working for corporate clients who back mandatory climate controls.
Mehlman is joined by others whose trust in the president is less financially motivated but no less delusional. Why are we not allowed to learn lessons about this guy from seven years on office? Just further in the same article, climate flack Connaughton makes it clear what Bush’s plan is:
Connaughton also raised some doubts about where the Bush administration will side should the Senate proceed with debate on a climate bill.
"One thing of concern we would have is the idea of putting a mandate on top of a mandate," he said. "And so we want to make sure that we’ve got a regulatory system working in close harmonization with our incentives, the positive incentives, with also then with the private sector initiative. And so it’s just going to take a little bit of thought, and if we do that we can simplify."
Connaughton added, "Right now what we see in the Senate are a number of proposals that are highly complicated and highly constituent interest group focused, and I think that’s not a recipe for success," he said.
"Mandate on top of a mandate" is code for exempting automakers from a cap and trade bill, on the grounds that CAFE standards already put a de facto carbon mandate on them. "Close harmonization with incentives" means that any regulations must be accompanied by enormous handouts to polluters. "Private sector initiative" means huge handouts for clean coal and nuclear power.
"Highly complicated and highly constituent interest group focused" is a preview of right-wing attacks on a cap-and-trade bill — as though allowing individual industries exemptions, and piling other subsidies onto other industries, does not complicate the bill.
In short, we’re wise to go with the Cardinal Rule of Bush Politics: maximum cynicism is always justified absent concrete evidence to mitigate it.