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Sen. David Vitter
David Vitter would like EPA shutdown
to last and last and last.
Having Republican David Vitter as the ranking member of the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works is a bit like having Custer as Commissioner of Indian Affairs. The senator's lifetime environment score from the League of Conservation Voters is four percent, although he managed a higher flunking grade of seven percent in 2012. The Senate average for 2012 was 56 percent.

Naturally, Vitter is a denier: “I do not think the science clearly supports global warming theory."

Which makes his recent "listicle" posted on the Environment committee's minority blog about why the federal government shutdown is a good thing not all that surprising. Five of the 10 reasons: Thousands of Environmental Protection Agency employees aren't working. Key elements of his glee:

5. EPA doesn't have the manpower to unilaterally expand its jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act

EPA has perpetually taken steps to expand its own jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act. The now-withdrawn guidance document and new rule are symptoms of an agency unceasingly trying to broaden its reach and frustrate commerce. Vitter and EPW Republicans have been demanding a whole lot more transparency and to unequivocally withdraw the controversial draft guidance.

8. Fewer bureaucrats at the EPA makes it less likely that they'll make up science on new regulations

Vitter and EPW Republicans have pointed out the flawed science behind a number of EPA rules and regulations on the social cost of carbon, methanol, power plants, hydraulic fracturing, and the list goes on and on.

The last bit is mostly bellyaching about EPA's proposed rules on coal- and gas-fired power plants. Vitter, who has shown no eagerness to support job-creating legislation other than tax cuts, is suddenly lathered up about jobs the EPA's rules will eliminate by requiring new power plants to emit carbon dioxide at a considerably lower level than existing plants. But he has no comment regarding the jobs that will be created by replacing the electricity from those plants with something that won't keep wrecking the environment.

What he'd really like, of which his recent speech attacking the nomination of Gina McCarthy for EPA administrator provided ample evidence, is for the agency to be on permanent furlough, top to bottom.

In Vitter's fossil-fueled myopia—he's taken nearly $600,000 in campaign contributions from oil and gas companies since 2009—there's no point for the EPA to be curbing greenhouse gas emissions because those emissions aren't causing any problems. Because there is no global warming. This from a senator whose state has seen at least an eight-inch rise in sea levels in the past half century.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 02:23 PM PDT.

Also republished by Louisiana Kossacks and Climate Change SOS.

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