Pence, GOP Colleagues Wrap Up Cap and Tax’ Tour
The House Republicans’ “energy solutions— team on Thursday wrapped up a three-day, three-city series of town hall meetings that featured sharp attacks on Democratic climate change legislation.During the tour, House Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (Ind.) joined local Republican Members in Pittsburgh, Indianapolis and San Luis Obispo, Calif., to hear from national energy experts and local business owners on the possible economic consequences of carbon cap-and-trade provisions included in the Democrats’ American Clean Energy and Security Act. Pence chairs the House GOP’s recently created American Energy Solutions Group.At each of the three stops, Pence said the goal of the meetings was to help Republicans shape their policy initiatives — but he also stressed the importance of pointing out the flaws of the Democratic plan. “It is my hope that we can leave here better armed with information and ideas so that Republicans can craft common-sense legislative solutions that will lower energy costs, increase supply, create jobs and provide energy independence for the American people,— Pence said in prepared remarks delivered at the three events. Without the issue of rising gas prices to drive Republican energy priorities, Pence and his GOP colleagues pointed to the cap-and-trade bill as proof that Democrats were unwilling to properly address the country’s energy needs.Republicans have relentlessly charged that a system of offsetting carbon emissions through mandatory caps and a market trading system will create higher utility prices for consumers. Calling the proposal “cap and tax,— Republicans have maintained that the climate change bill will result in a “national energy tax.—“There is no doubt that the Democrats’ misguided bill will kill jobs, raise taxes and lead to more government intrusion,— Pence, joined by Pennsylvania Republican Reps. Tim Murphy and Glenn Thompson, told about 60 attendees at the event in Pittsburgh on Tuesday. “This national energy tax is an irresponsible proposal that will do more harm than good.—Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels told a crowd of 200 listeners at Wednesday’s event in Indianapolis that the Democratic climate change bill “fails the test of government that works.— “The cost of this policy will be certain, massive and immediate,— Daniels said. “The benefits of this policy, if any, will be dubious, minuscule and decades distant.— The American Energy Solutions Group was created by Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) and has held four summits this year. The first was held May 5 in Washington, D.C.