Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Attention Michigan Newspaper Editorialists: House Passed Energy Bills in April

Since I took Tom Walsh to task for spreading the blame to both chambers of the Legislature for the delay on the energy bills, I guess it's only fair that I jump on the Bay City Times as well. Today's editorial rightly points out the various games being played in both Lansing and Washington when it comes to energy policy - but don't you dare blame the Democrats for any of it. The Republicans OWN both of these political stunts.

Seeing that circus in Congress, Michigan Republican House members thought, what a neat idea!

They staged their own little drama in August to complain that Democrats closed down Lansing without passing important energy legislation.

Pay no attention to the fact that it was the all-too-usual months of haggling between both Republicans and Democrats in Lansing that brought progress on renewable energy standards and electricity regulation to a screeching halt.

Wrong. Once again, the House passed the bills on April 17th. Strong bipartisan support. Anyone remember?

April. A-p-r-i-l. In the spring. Baseball had just started. The leaves were not yet full on the trees. Summer was a spot on the horizon. April. At which point, the Senate Republicans put on a full court stall and used every excuse they could possibly think of to delay acting on this legislation.

Is haggling to be expected? Of course. But the Senate version of "haggling" was to pass an unacceptable version of this package in the dead of night, at the end of June, right before they blew town for vacation. What happened between April and June? They can't walk and chew the budget at the same time was the excuse. Funny how the House can get all this stuff done. The House set the RPS back to 10% when they came back in July, and then the Senate Republicans started using fuzzy math and cancelling sessions and crying about the convention or the election or whatever reason they could find for not taking action and boom! yet another month or goes by, and Andy Dillon comes to confess that he felt he was "starting from scratch" with the Senate Republicans.

That's not "haggling", that's obstruction, and there is only one group of people to blame. Don't include the Democrats in this particular bit of dysfunction in Lansing - this is all on the Senate Republicans. They are denying Michigan job creation and investment as part of their election year games.

Time to point that out, editorialists.