On yet another issue, U.S. Representative Michael Arcuri has demonstrated an antiprogressive agenda this week. This time, the issue is climate change.
In 2008, people elected Democrats to Congress and the White House in large part because the Democrat promised a green energy revolution. They seemed so earnest, so honest. Yet, in 2009, we've learned that if you really want green energy, you're going to have to vote Green Party - at least in New York State's 24th district.
Yesterday Michael Arcuri voted to kill legislation promoting a green energy in order to fight global climate change, including global warming. Once again, Arcuri joined with the Republicans to support the kind of politics of pollution we saw under George W. Bush.
Why did Arcuri do it? Why did he vote with Big Oil, against the environment? Here's his excuse for opposing the legislation:
"In the short term it will have a negative effect on my district because of the high power costs."
This comment reveals why Mike Arcuri has come to be regarded as among the mental lightweights of the House of Representatives. In the short term, the bill will create higher power costs, but in the long term, it will actually lower costs. Trust Arcuri to ignore long term benefits in favor of short term thinking.
Besides that, what's the cost that this bill will actually create? According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, the cost for the average American will be 48 cents per day. Low income Americans will actually gain economically from the legislation. These calculations don't even take into account the economic benefit from avoiding damage related to climate change, which is estimated in the billions per year already.
It seems that Arcuri is willing to let Planet Earth go to pot for the sake of 48 cents in short term savings. In 2010, let's make Michael Arcuri a short term member of Congress.