Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Roberts and Brownback shortchange Kansas

The Senate voted on renewing the Renewable Energy and Jobs Creation Act of 2008 for another year. The legislation had been successful in generating billions of dollars in investment in renewable energy and provided thousands of jobs. Brownback and Roberts voted against extending this bill for another year.

Kansas Republicans are still pushing for two heavily polluting coal plants and the coal lobbyists are spending like mad to bribe Republicans to remain loyal. Down in Texas one man invested two billion dollars in a huge windfarm that will generate hundreds of new jobs and fill Texas coffers with revenue from clean energy. Kansas could follow by investing heavily in wind and exporting that clean energy while not reaping any negative effects from pollution. However we are infected with men who lack vision.

Roberts is up for re-election and is being challenged by Jim Slattery who supports clean energy and investing in Kansas.

I just received a lovely form letter from Roberts explaining his justification for voting against Kansas' interests:
My record shows that I support incentives for renewable energy production. However, late last year the tax package accompanying the Energy Independence and Security Act used tax increases on other energy industries to pay for the wind and solar energy incentives. I disagreed with that particular offset. As a member of the Senate Finance Committee with jurisdiction over tax policy, I will continue to work to support tax credits for renewable energy production with appropriate offsets.

Well that's lovely, he supported the extension before voting against it. That's like telling your wife for her anniversary that he fully supported getting her flowers until he found out that he'd have to pay for them. But rest assured dear that in the future I will seriously consider your desire for flowers.

Can we blame Roberts for selling out Kansas? After all, the investments would have been paid for by taxing the top five oil companies. Exxon-Mobil made $41 billion in profits therefore they desperately needed the tax breaks. Sounds like Roberts had no problem giving Exxon flowers.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

Flowers is the least that Roberts can expect after accepting $184,000 from Big Oil from 2002 to 2007 (according to the Topeka Capitol Journal).
With his record of fiscal irresponsibility - passing the bill off to future generations - it is nice to see that he at least gives some thought to how to pay for the incentives. Seems to me, though, that taxing other energy industries is *exactly* where the money should come from.