Two years ago, both the presidential candidates were big supporters of “cap-and-trade” legislation designed to fight climate change across the economy, but ads and debates in this election season show how unpopular that idea has become.
Democrats are running commercials declaring they’re against it because it would raise energy prices and hurt their states’ economies. And Republican ads attack Democrats for supporting the bill, which passed the House but stalled in the Senate.
None of those commercials is quite as memorable as one being aired by West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, who is running for Senate. The Democrat is so determined to show the people in his state that he’s against the climate bill that in his ad he loads a rifle and points at a copy of the legislation.
“I’ll take dead aim,” Manchin says right before he pulls the trigger, “at the cap-and-trade bill, because it’s bad for West Virginia.”
Some Democrats are standing up for action on climate change and trying to expose their opponents as members of a flat earth society.
In a recent debate for a Rhode Island House seat, David Cicilline said the nation needs to come up with a solution for global warming.
“And we can’t have a real discussion about it if you don’t believe in it,” Cicilline said to Republican John Loughlin.
“It’s not something you believe in. It’s not like the Easter bunny,” Loughlin shot back.
“No. It’s science,” Cicilline said, referring to the fact that most scientists agree that man is contributing to global warming, especially by burning fossil fuels.
But Loughlin countered: “It’s science and the scientific consensus is not there.”
There is one place where shrinking global warming pollution remains popular: Polls predict voters in California will reject a ballot proposition that would have stalled the state’s version of cap and trade.
But overall the issue is playing negatively.