For anyone who pays close attention, it is clear that John McCain is far behind both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton when it comes to Global Warming. McCain’s campaign might be a “Green Straight Talk Express” but, when given the opportunity to act, Senator McCain’s reality is more like a Dirty Energy Twisted Delay Action Machine.
But, for the Washington Post, the significant differences between a McCain and Obama or Clinton Administration aren’t worthy of note. From today’s lead editorial on the choice voters will face this November, The Coming Change:
In contrast to President Bush, the next president will not start as a skeptic about the danger posed by global warming, and he or she will favor, not resist, legislation to impose mandatory caps on greenhouse gases, even without an international agreement binding other nations.
Yes, John McCain has talked the talk when it comes to Global Warming, having had a conversion to reality-based thinking earlier this century. And, John McCain did co-sponsor Climate Change legislation only slightly worse than the Lieberman-Warner Coal-Subsidy Act. But, having a toe in the real world doesn’t mean that there is not significant difference between McCain and the coming Democratic Party nominee (whether Obama or Clinton). This one-sentence re Global Warming washes over these differences and, sadly, is likely the view of those who don’t pay real attention to this critical issue.
Joe Romm, over at ClimateProgress, does a truly excellent job of laying out the differences which I won’t seek to fully emulate. But here are just a few of the differences:
Obama/Clinton are on the record supporting 80 percent reductions in carbon emissions by 2050, which is the minimum reduction required, according to the top scientists, to provide a 50% chance of avoiding catastrophic climate change. McCain? In the range of 60%, sort of …
Obama/Clinton are on the record calling for 100% auction of permits associated with any cap on carbon emissions. McCain? $100s ($1000s) of billions of giveaways to serial polluters.
Obama/Clinton would appoint federal appointees who believe in science and who will be attentive to Global Warming issues. McCain? Will he be able to find them in the Republican Party?
Obama/Clinton would pursue regulations that support reducing Global Warming emissions, recognizing the role that the Federal Government has for leadership of Americans and partnership with private enterprise (and other nations) for addressing this massive challenge. McCain? Private enterprise will solve it all, maybe.
The contrasts are stark if one pays attention to the issue, not if one pays attention to the Washington Post editorial page.
And, if anything, the differences might get larger in the coming months. Conservatives are, reportedly, pushing hard on McCain to abandon reality when it comes to recognizing science on Global Warming.
…. Others on the right who have grudgingly faced facts have urged McCain to mollify the base by, among other things, changing his stance on global warming.
If this occurs, one has to wonder whether The Washington Post editorial board will deign to notice.