Today is the national Parade of Reason organized by Fuse and other progressive organizations, in which thousands of Americans will stop by their Congressperson’s local office and drop off a small memento illustrating their personal reasons for urging Congress to act now on climate change. You can get more information and find your local Congressional office here.
Oil and coal interests did some real damage to the climate change bill in committee, but there are still a lot of good provisions left, and… well… we gotta start somewhere, and soon. We all know Rep. Jay Inslee is a driving force on this and other environmental issues, but most of the rest of the Western Washington delegation appears to be standing on the sideline. That’s why we need to urge Jim McDermott, Brian Baird, Adam Smith and Rick Larsen to get behind this bill now, help strengthen it on the floor, and get it passed when it comes up for a vote in a couple weeks.
And then there’s Rep. Dave Reichert.
Reichert likes to portray himself as moderate. The Seattle Times likes to portray him as a moderate. And faced with two tough, well financed challenges from Darcy Burner, Reichert occasionally found himself last session pushed into a few moderate votes, if only to save his own skin in November.
Of course, I’ve always insisted Reichert’s alleged “conscience driven independence” is a fraud, his votes against the party line always coming after the conclusion was foregone, and only after consistently opposing the measure in numerous procedural votes. So here’s his chance to prove me wrong.
Indeed, not only does Reichert have the chance to cast one of the only Republican votes for this legislation, he has the unparalleled opportunity to be the lone Republican getting out in front of this bill and leading the way. He and his handlers must know that climate change legislation has overwhelming support in his district—a pro-environment, hydro-powered district less economically dependent on fossil fuels than nearly any in the nation—so if he really wants to prove his moderation and independence (not to mention his legislative competence), now’s the time to show a little leadership and help shepherd this important piece of legislation through Congress.
But I’m not holding my breath.