We have officially gone through the looking glass, and this new level of political gamemanship is deeply disturbing. The Republican Party have lost all sense of perspective in their blind hatred towards Obama and, now seem intent on going around to anyone who will listen to in the hopes of convincing them that Obama – the President of the United States – should be ignored.
Just a few weeks after slapping his name on an open letter to Iran suggesting the Iranian government ignore any nuclear deal Obama may propose (or else), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) came up with his very own letter he hoped to circulate among state Governors that asked much of the same: Don’t listen to President Obama, because we don’t agree with him.
His beef stems from Obama ordering coal-fired power plants to cut greenhouse gas pollution in the coming years, bypassing a useless, seemingly-scientifically illiterate Congress. In the letter, addressed to the National Governors Association, McConnell accused Obama of being lawless and suggested that states simply ignore his directive aimed at curtailing climate change:
Some have recently suggested that failing to comply with the EPA’s requirements would be to disregard the law. But the fact is, it is the EPA that is failing to comply with the law here.
I hope you will carefully review the consequences before signing up for this deeply misguided plan. I believe you will find, as I have, that the EPA’s proposal goes far beyond its legal authority and that the courts are likely to strike it down.
McConnell then claims that states should have the right to ignore the order because the Obama administration’s “hope” is that states will be forced to to implement these climate change plans before Republicans can scuttle the order. That’s not fair! Therefore, in the interest of cutting out the middleman (read: existing legal and legislative precedent), states should just not comply and hope the courts eventually say they were right.
According to Talking Points Memo, Obama’s senior adviser, Brian Deese, undoubtedly getting pretty tired of these stunts, condemned McConnnell’s letter.
“What you have is the Republican leader, Mitch McConnell, going way outside the bounds of the position he was elected to,” Deese said at a breakfast for reporters hosted by the Christian Science Monitor.
He said McConnell should spend “less time trying to lecture states about what they should be doing” and “more time trying to actually get some constructive things in Congress — for example, he could confirm a highly qualified attorney who’s been sitting out there for [more than a hundred] days.”
Or perhaps McConnell would like to propose some solutions to climate change himself? Maybe then Obama wouldn’t have to go around him and he could have a seat at the table.
We shouldn’t hold our breath. Even ignoring the fact that the Republican Party’s pointman on the environment, Sen. James Inhofe, thinks climate change isn’t real because of he could make a snowball, there is also the matter of McConnell’s vested interest in coal. A cynical interpretation of McConnell’s temper tantrum would be that it has absolutely nothing to do with the science behind climate change and everything to do with keep Kentucky coal mine owners smitten with the senator they paid for.
Feature image via Wikimedia