Senate Intelligence Committee Votes to Approve Climate Denier Dan Coats for DNI 13 to 2

Posted by Brad Johnson Mon, 13 Mar 2017 21:15:00 GMT

Another climate denier is one step closer to filling another seat in Donald Trump’s cabinet. On Thursday, March 9, the U.S. Senate Select Committee for Intelligence advanced the nomination of Dan Coats, Republican of Indiana, to the Senate floor.

Coats has dismissed the threat of global warming when asked, talking about snowstorms as if they disprove manmade climate change.

Only Democrats Ron Wyden of Oregon and Kamala Harris of California voted against the former senator and corporate lobbyist, who has limited foreign-affairs or intelligence experience.

Voting to approve Coats were all eight Republicans on the committee and five of seven Democrats.
  • Richard Burr (R-N.C.)
  • James Risch (R-Idaho)
  • Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)
  • Susan Collins (R-Maine)
  • Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
  • James Lankford (R-Okla.)
  • Tom Cotton (R-Ark.)
  • John Cornyn (R-Texas)
  • Mark Warner (D-Va.)
  • Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.)
  • Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.)
  • Angus King (I-Maine)
  • Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.)

These five members of the Democratic caucus (King is an independent) have voted for other of Trump’s climate-denier nominees, despite all professing concern about the threat of manmade climate change.

Senate Democrats Vote En Masse for Climate Deniers

Posted by Brad Johnson Fri, 03 Mar 2017 17:06:00 GMT

This week, Senate Democrats joined the Republican majority to confirm three avowed deniers of climate science into Donald Trump’s cabinet — Ryan Zinke for Interior, Ben Carson for Housing and Urban Development, and Rick Perry for Energy. Zinke was confirmed on Wednesday, and Carson and Perry confirmed on Thursday. Democrats chose not to use the 30 hours of debate time following the Perry cloture vote, instead allowing his confirmation to occur immediately after.

Seventeen members of the Democratic caucus voted for Ryan Zinke; 11 voted for cloture on Carson; and 12 voted for cloture or confirmation on Perry. In all, 22 Democrats voted at least once with Republicans for these nominees.

Angus King (Maine) is an independent who caucuses with the Democrats.

Democrats for Zinke
  • Michael Bennet (Colo.)
  • Sherrod Brown (Ohio)
  • Chris Coons (Del.)
  • Catherine Cortez Masto (Nev.)
  • Joe Donnelly (Ind.)
  • Martin Heinrich (N.M.)
  • Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.)
  • Tim Kaine (Va.)
  • Angus King (Maine)
  • Joe Manchin (W.Va.)
  • Claire McCaskill (Mo.)
  • Chris Murphy (Conn.)
  • Bill Nelson (Fla.)
  • Jon Tester (Mont.)
  • Tom Udall (N.M.)
  • Mark Warner (Va.)
  • Ron Wyden (Ore.) – voted present for cloture, for confirmation
Democrats for Carson
  • Sherrod Brown (Ohio)
  • Ben Cardin (Md.) – voted for cloture, against confirmation
  • Tom Carper (Del.) – voted for cloture, against confirmation
  • Joe Donnelly (Ind.)
  • Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.)
  • Joe Manchin (W.V.)
  • Bob Menendez (N.J.) – voted for cloture, against confirmation
  • Jack Reed (R.I.) – voted for cloture, against confirmation
  • Jon Tester (Mont.)
  • Mark Warner (Va.)
  • Angus King (Maine)
Democrats for Perry
  • Ben Cardin (Md.) – voted for cloture, against confirmation
  • Tom Carper (Del.) – voted against cloture, for confirmation
  • Catherine Cortez Masto (Nev.)
  • Joe Donnelly (Ind.)
  • Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.)
  • Angus King (Maine)
  • Joe Manchin (W.Va.)
  • Tom Udall (N.M.)
  • Claire McCaskill (Mo.)
  • Debbie Stabenow (Mich.)
  • Jon Tester (Mont.)
  • Mark Warner (Va.)

Ex-President Barack Obama Orchestrated Tom Perez DNC Chair Victory

Posted by Brad Johnson Sun, 26 Feb 2017 19:29:00 GMT

Former president Barack Obama, whose legacy is being rapidly dismantled by President Donald Trump and a Republican Party dominating all levels of government, was instrumental in the election of Tom Perez as the new head of the Democratic Party. Perez defeated Congressman Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the initial front-runner in the Democratic National Committee Chair race, by a 235-200 vote on Sunday.

Obama, whose presidency oversaw a catastrophic collapse in electoral power for Democrats, and who paved the way for Hillary Clinton as the failed Democratic presidential nominee, has publicly expressed his intent to continue to direct the party now that he is out of office.

Ellison entered the race with backing from influential leaders across the Democratic Party, appearing to unify the interest groups of the party that had been split into the camps supporting Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders during the 2016 Democratic primary. Ellison’s career includes environmental-justice and civil-rights organizing, local and national electoral organizing, and effective public engagement on the national stage—perhaps most notably his warning to the nation to take Donald Trump’s presidential campaign seriously in the summer of 2015, while political pundits were treating Trump as a good-for-ratings joke.

Ellison’s campaign faced concerted public attacks against Ellison’s candidacy from anti-Muslim activists and party funders who accused Ellison of being an anti-Semite despite a long record of alliance with and advocacy for progressive Jewish politics.

In addition, Ellison ran a campaign publicly discouraging engagement by the grassroots members of the party, contradicting his own declared vision of a grassroots-driven party.

Meanwhile, Perez rose in favor among the DNC membership after gaining the public endorsement of key Obama allies, foremost among them former Vice President Joe Biden. That Obama was personally backing Perez was widely understood but never directly confirmed.

In the wake of Perez’s victory, Politico’s Edward-Isaac Dovere has reported that Obama himself selected Perez to run and then personally lobbied DNC members on behalf of Perez:
[T]he distaste for [Ellison’] approach and profile . . . helped push former President Barack Obama to urge Perez into the race — and continue the support all the way through. He called DNC members himself, and had aides including confidante Valerie Jarrett, former political director David Simas and his White House director of political engagement Paulette Aniskoff working members by phone through the votes on Saturday afternoon. Former Vice President Joe Biden, who officially endorsed Perez, also worked the phones with members.

Obama and Biden made a four-point pitch, according to a person familiar with the call strategy: Perez’s unimpeachable progressive credentials at the Justice and Labor departments, his ability to bring people together, his management skills and how he was one of the stars of the Obama administration.

(Some progressive critics have impeached Perez’s record at Justice and Labor, particularly his strong support for the TPP.)

Obama’s direct involvement in the race was not reported until after Perez was elected. Soon after Perez won, Obama made his first public statement on the race, congratulating Perez and his own “legacy”:
Congratulations to my friend Tom Perez on his election to lead the Democratic Party, and on his choice of Keith Ellison to help him lead it. I’m proud of all the candidates who ran, and who make this great party what it is. What unites our party is a belief in opportunity – the idea that however you started out, whatever you look like, or whomever you love, America is the place where you can make it if you try. Over the past eight years, our party continued its track record of delivering on that promise: growing the economy, creating new jobs, keeping our people safe with a tough, smart foreign policy, and expanding the rights of our founding to every American – including the right to quality, affordable health insurance. That’s a legacy the Democratic Party will always carry forward. I know that Tom Perez will unite us under that banner of opportunity, and lay the groundwork for a new generation of Democratic leadership for this big, bold, inclusive, dynamic America we love so much.

Obama’s depiction of the Democratic Party as the party of “opportunity” hearkens back to President Ronald Reagan, who frequently described the Republican Party as the party of “opportunity.” After his victory, Perez told Meet the Press “we are the party of opportunity and inclusion.”

In post-election exit interviews, Obama made clear that he intends to maintain control over the Democratic Party, whose problems he perceives to be rooted in messaging failures, not policy weaknesses. He told Rolling Stone that it would be “incorrect” to conclude that the Obama administration neglected rural or working-class communities; instead the discontent is a result of a “communications” problem to be solved by a new “common story” and then “figuring out how do we attract more eyeballs and make it more interesting and more entertaining and more persuasive.”

If you look at the data from the election, if it were just young people who were voting, Hillary would have gotten 500 electoral votes. So we have helped, I think, shape a generation to think about being inclusive, being fair, caring about the environment. And they will have growing influence year by year, which means that America over time will continue to get better. This is a cultural issue. And a communications issue. It is true that a lot of manufacturing has left or transformed itself because of automation. But during the course of my presidency, we added manufacturing jobs at historic rates… The challenge we had is not that we’ve neglected these communities from a policy perspective. That is, I think, an incorrect interpretation. You start reading folks saying, “Oh, you know, working-class families have been neglected,” or “Working-class white families have not been paid attention to by Democrats.” Actually, they have. What is true, though, is that whatever policy prescriptions that we’ve been proposing don’t reach, are not heard, by the folks in these communities. And what they do hear is Obama or Hillary are trying to take away their guns or they disrespect you. I’ll spend time in my first year out of office writing a book, and I’m gonna be organizing my presidential center, which is gonna be focused on precisely this issue of how do we train and empower the next generation of leadership. How do we rethink our storytelling, the messaging and the use of technology and digital media, so that we can make a persuasive case across the country? And not just in San Francisco or Manhattan but everywhere, about why climate change matters or why issues of economic inequality have to be addressed.
Well, the most important thing that I’m focused on is how we create a common set of facts. That sounds kind of abstract. Another way of saying it is, how do we create a common story about where we are. It’s gonna require those of us who are interested in progressive causes figuring out how do we attract more eyeballs and make it more interesting and more entertaining and more persuasive.

Obama told NPR and David Axelrod that his post-presidency plan is to focus on “developing young Democratic leaders” to continue the same policies as his administration but with a better messaging approach to ex-urban and rural voters.

Now, with his pick as the head of the Democratic Party, a newly re-launched Organizing for Action, and a foundation overseen by Silicon Valley and Wall Street executives, the former president is in a strong position to put his plan to defend his presidency’s reputation through a new generation of Democratic politics into action.

Linda McMahon, Trump's SBA Pick, Rejects Climate Science

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 09 Feb 2017 17:05:00 GMT

World Wrestling Entertainment executive and performer Linda McMahon, Donald Trump’s nominee to head the Small Business Administration, is a global warming denier.

When McMahon unsuccessfully ran for U.S. Senate in Connecticut in 2010, she explained her rejection of the scientific understanding of climate change to the Connecticut Mirror:
McMahon, the Republican nominee and former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, says the “science is mixed” on what has caused global warming, although she does not dispute that the climate is indeed changing.

“I just don’t think we have the answers as to why it changes,” she said. “I’m not a scientist, so I couldn’t pretend to understand all the reasons. But the bottom line is we really don’t know.”

McMahon went on to describe her opposition to climate legislation and support for unrestricted oil and gas drilling. She lost to Democrat Richard Blumenthal, who accurately stated that “the science is irrefutable, and we would be irresponsible to ignore it.”

In reality, the carbon-dioxide greenhouse effect is a physical fact known since the 1800s. The only scientifically plausible systematic explanation – what the word “theory” means in scientific jargon, despite Rep. Perry’s confusion – for the rapid warming of the planetary climate since 1950 is industrial greenhouse pollution. Because of the hundreds of billions of tons of industrial carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere, the global climate is continuing to warm, with every decade since the 1970s warmer than the last, and the impacts of global warming are accelerating faster than scientists projected.

Army Corps Grants Expedited Dakota Access Pipeline Easement

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 07 Feb 2017 20:50:00 GMT

Douglas W Lamont
Douglas W. Lamont, acting Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works
Cancelling an ongoing environmental review, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has given Congress 24 hours notice of its decision to grant an easement for the construction of the final leg of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline. The action was directed by one of President Donald Trump’s first presidential memoranda.

In the waning days of the Obama administration, after global pressure built from sustained opposition by Native American tribes to the Bakken shale pipeline in North Dakota, the Army announced it would begin a new environmental impact statement review of the project. Trump’s presidential memorandum of January 24th directed the Army Corps to expedite the approval process for the pipeline by any legal means necessary. In memos issued by Douglas W. Lamont, acting Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, the corps terminated the environmental impact statement process and foreshortened the Congressional notification period from two weeks to one day.

Final construction on the pipeline could thus begin as early as tomorrow.

In other news, Arctic temperatures are nearing 50 degrees above normal, a massive crack is spreading across one of the major Antarctic ice shelves, and a massive tornado hit New Orleans.

Download Lamont’s DAPL EIS termination memo.

Download Lamont’s expedited DAPL easement memo.

Rex Tillerson Continues to Reject Climate Science

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 24 Jan 2017 20:01:00 GMT

In written testimony, Trump’s Secretary of State candidate, former Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson, continued to reject the scientific consensus of manmade global warming. Responding to a question from Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Tillerson made the specious claim that rising industrial greenhouse gases — produced in large part by his own corporation — are not the primary driver of global warming.

CARDIN: Do you accept the consensus among scientists that the combustion of fossil fuels is the leading cause for increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere which is the key factor in the rising global temperatures?

TILLERSON: I agree with the consensus view that the combustion of fossil fuels is a leading cause for increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. I understand these gases to be a factor in rising temperatures, but I do not believe the scientific consensus supports their characterization as the “key” factor.
In fact, the scientific consensus is that anthropogenic greenhouse gases are responsible for all of the observed global warming, and likely even more — without human activity, global temperatures may have declined slightly. As the 2014 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment report stated:
Anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions have increased since the pre-industrial era, driven largely by economic and population growth, and are now higher than ever. This has led to atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide that are unprecedented in at least the last 800,000 years. Their effects, together with those of other anthropogenic drivers, have been detected throughout the climate system and are extremely likely to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.

Tillerson’s failure to understand climate science was convenient for ExxonMobil’s profits, but is catastrophically dangerous for ability of the planet to support organized society.

Transcript of Rex Tillerson Confirmation Hearing Part I

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 12 Jan 2017 21:34:00 GMT

CORKER: The Foreign Relations Committee will come to order.

We appreciate everybody being here as the Senate carries out one of its most important responsibility, which is to advice — to give advice and consent to nominees that are put forth by a president. We thank all of you for being here. Obviously, there’s a lot of interest in this hearing. We would ask those who, like us, have the privilege of being in this room, we would ask you to respect democracy, respect the right for us to have a hearing, to control yourselves in an appropriate manner, and I’m sure that is gonna be the case. This is the best of America here.

Serving with outstanding members on this committee. As a matter of fact, because of so much happening in the world today and because of the role that this committee has played over the last several years, demand on this committee has grown and — and with that, I want to welcome new members who I know will play a big role in the future of our country.

Mr. Todd Young, newly elected to the Senate, we welcome you here. This is our first public appearance. We thank you for your interest in our country’s future and for being here. Mr. Rob Portman, who also joined the committee. I think he serves on more committees here than anybody in the Senate, but we thank you for your responsible thinking and leadership. I want to thank Jeff Merkley, who I know cares very, very deeply about these issues, for joining this committee, for your principled efforts in so many regards, and I know they will continue here.

And Cory Booker, new star of the Senate, who I know will play a very vigorous role here and we thank you so much for being here today.

Just to give you a little bit of a sense of what’s gonna happen today, we have four very distinguished people, two of whom are colleagues, who will introduce the nominee and then we will move to opening statements. I will give an opening statement, our distinguished ranking member will give an opening statement and then our nominee, Mr. Rex Tillerson, will give his.

Each person here will have 10 minutes to ask questions, a little bit more than the norm. We’ve coordinated the schedule with the ranking member, but also with Senator Schumer and others, just to ensure that the American people and certainly all of us have the opportunity to ask the kind of questions that people would like to ask.

I would say to members, I know some of us have an art form of being able to ask about 90 questions in time ending about five seconds before the respondent responds. The 10 minutes includes the response and I’m gonna be — in order to be — in order to be respectful of everybody’s time, which is a little bit unusual here, we’re gonna be — we’re gonna hold to that in a very rigid way.

Our plan is that we will go until about one o’clock today if everybody uses their time. We will take a break out of showing mercy to our nominee for about 45 minutes and to many of us up here. And then we’ll come back and resume until such a time as we have the vote-a-rama that — which I think begins around six o’clock this evening.

Again, in order to make sure that all questions are answered, the ranking member and I have agreed that should there be another day necessary, we’ll begin a morning — in the morning at 10 o’clock. Hopefully, with all that will happen today, that will be unnecessary, but our nominee is very aware that that may well occur.

I think all of you know that our business meeting, again, in order to show respect for all of who are here, is moved until tonight when we have the vote-a-rama, at which time will take up the accession — Montenegro accession to NATO and will take up the — the resolution relative to Israel. We’ll do that off the floor this evening.

So, with that…

Millennials to Wall Street Democrats: “You’re responsible for Trump’s victory. Step Aside.”

Posted by Brad Johnson Mon, 14 Nov 2016 18:06:00 GMT

#AllofUs Stages Sit-In at Chuck Schumer’s Office Calling for New Bold Progressive Leadership

Facebook Video Feed

Washington, DC ­ – On the heels of Donald Trump’s presidential election upset, a multiracial group of 25 millennials will conduct a sit-in at Democrat Senator Chuck Schumer’s office in Washington on Monday. Under the name AllofUs the group will refuse to leave Schumer’s office until Schumer and Democratic Party leadership take responsibility for losing the support of millennial and working class voters. The group will demand that Senator Schumer step down as Minority Leader and support Bernie Sanders as the leader of the Democratic opposition.

Schumer, who just announced his support for progressive Democrat Keith Ellison, is still signaling his intention to work with Donald Trump. AllofUs will argue that it’s not enough to take a “wait and see” approach to a man who lost the popular vote, has pledged to violate the Constitution, and rose to power denying the humanity of millions of Americans.

AllofUs will argue that what the Democratic party needs now is not capitulation to a dangerous racist demagogue, but a bold progressive vision to take our country back from the billionaire class and build a future for all of us. New leadership in the Democratic party is urgently needed, especially in the senate, where Democrats’ only hope in the immediate future is to contain the damage of a Trump presidency. As the U.S. Senator with the most campaign contributions from Wall Street, Chuck Schumer has no legitimacy to lead the opposition or assert that vision.

What: ​25 millennials sitting in at Schumer’s office, 5 millennial speakers

Who: #AllofUs – a millennial group dedicated to pressuring the Democratic Party to serve the interests of millennials, people of color, and working class people. Including:

  • Yong Jung Cho, #AllofUs co-founder, former Campaign Coordinator, 350.org
  • Waleed Shahid, #AllofUs co-founder
  • Natalie Green, Survivor and human rights activist
  • Moumita Ahmed, founder for Millennials for Bernie
  • James Hayes, founder Ohio Student Association and Trainer with Ayni Institute
  • Nick Martin, Mennonite, former Bernie 2016 field organizer, rural anti-pipeline organizer.

Where: Senator Chuck Schumer’s Office. 322 Hart Senate Office Building

When: Monday, November 14th, at 11AM

Why: ​Wall Street Democrats have lost their legitimacy to run the party by failing to prevent the rise of Donald Trump. Trump’s false populism that scapegoats people of color and immigrants was only successful because Democrats abandoned their commitment to fighting for working people, and sold out to Wall Street.

Our generation and the American people’s interests were not represented by this party and now once again, our lives are on the line. Democrats must commit on day one to fighting Donald Trump’s agenda of hate every step of the way, and making him a one-term president, and that fight begins with new leadership to take our country back from the billionaires and create an America for #AllofUs.

Clinton Climate, Environmental, Energy and Agriculture Advisors

Posted by Brad Johnson Mon, 07 Nov 2016 02:18:00 GMT

Various sources have reported (or speculated) on climate advisors to Hillary Clinton campaign and potential picks for a Clinton administration, including Politico, The following advisors have financial ties to the fossil-fuel industry or have publicly stated clear pro-fossil-fuel industry positions.

  • Trevor Houser – supports fracking, oil exports. Company Rhodium Group has fossil-fuel industry clients.
  • Heather Zichal – on the board of natural-gas fracking company Cheniere
  • Carol Browner – on the board of nuclear lobbying group Nuclear Matters; Albright Stonebridge Group has numerous fossil-fuel interests
  • Jody Freeman – on the board of ConocoPhillips
  • Michael Levi – supportive of Keystone XL, tar sands extraction, oil exports; Council on Foreign Relations funded by oil and gas industry
  • Jason Bordoff – Columbia Global Center on Energy funded by oil and gas industry
  • John Hickenlooper – petroleum engineer, strongly supporting of fracking
  • Tom Vilsack – worked for corporate law and lobbying firm Dorsey & Whitney, with numerous oil and gas clients
  • Blanche Lincoln – lobbies for Monsanto, Valero
  • Steven Beshear – Governors Council of fossil-funded Bipartisan Policy Center
  • Tom Nides – vice chairman of Morgan Stanley, major fossil-industry bank
  • Carlos Pascual – led international oil and gas promotion effort at State Department
  • Sarah Ladislaw – Senior Director, International Affairs, Statoil 2012
  • Gordon Giffin – Keystone XL lobbyist
  • Peter Ogden – senior advisor at Rhodium Group
  • Ernest Moniz – current Secretary of Energy, produced reports on fracking paid by oil and gas industry
The following have some ties to corporate America, the fossil-fuel industry, or have stated support for regulated fracking or opposition to aggressive climate policy.
  • Ben Kobren
  • John Podesta
  • Jennifer Granholm
  • Kristina Costa
  • Daniel Esty
  • Susan Tierney
  • Debbie Stabenow
  • David Hayes
The following have built a record of being strong on climate and environmental policy, without fossil-fuel ties.
  • Jane Lubchenco
  • Michael Oppenheimer
  • Frances Beinecke
  • Kathleen Merrigan
  • Michael Mann
  • Robert G Stanton
  • Lucy Waletzky
  • Wendy Abrams
  • Chris Rackens
  • Arun Majumdar
  • Paul Bodnar

Discussion of Climate Change at the 2016 Presidential Debates

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 20 Oct 2016 02:58:00 GMT

Clinton and Trump at the debatesUnlike 2012’s shocking climate silence, the 2016 presidential candidates discussed climate change and policy at each of their three debates. Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate, and Donald Trump, the Republican nominee, did so not at the behest of the moderators, but introduced the topic when asked about the economy, foreign policy, and energy policy. Trump staked out a position as a coal-embracing climate denier; Clinton as a natural gas-to-renewables open-market clean-tech investor.

Below are the relevant sections of the debate transcripts.

First Debate

Clinton notes that Donald Trump promoted the conspiracy theory that China created global warming, which he denies saying. She says that addressing climate change is part of her economic plan. Later, Trump mocks the idea that global warming is a national security threat.

Lester Holt asks about plans for job creation.

CLINTON: [Independent experts] have looked at my plans and they’ve said, OK, if we can do this, and I intend to get it done, we will have 10 million more new jobs, because we will be making investments where we can grow the economy. Take clean energy. Some country is going to be the clean- energy superpower of the 21st century. Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it’s real.

TRUMP: I did not. I did not. I do not say that.

CLINTON: I think science is real.

TRUMP: I do not say that.

CLINTON: And I think it’s important that we grip this and deal with it, both at home and abroad. And here’s what we can do. We can deploy a half a billion more solar panels. We can have enough clean energy to power every home. We can build a new modern electric grid. That’s a lot of jobs; that’s a lot of new economic activity.

In response to Clinton discussing ISIS, Trump talks about the United States should have seized the oil in Iraq and possibly Libya.

TRUMP: Or, as I’ve been saying for a long time, and I think you’ll agree, because I said it to you once, had we taken the oil — and we should have taken the oil — ISIS would not have been able to form either, because the oil was their primary source of income. And now they have the oil all over the place, including the oil — a lot of the oil in Libya, which was another one of her disasters.

Lester Holt asks about judgment. Clinton criticizes Trump on nuclear proliferation.

TRUMP: The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear armament, nuclear weapons, not global warming, like you think and your — your president thinks.

Second Debate

At the town hall debate, Clinton and Trump are asked by coal-plant worker Ken Bone about energy policy and the environment. Trump criticizes the EPA and promotes coal and natural gas. Clinton touts the increased domestic extraction of oil and natural gas, which she calls a “bridge” to “more renewable fuels.” She goes on to describe climate change as a “serious problem.”

COOPER: We have one more question from Ken Bone about energy policy. Ken?

QUESTION: What steps will your energy policy take to meet our energy needs, while at the same time remaining environmentally friendly and minimizing job loss for fossil power plant workers?

COOPER: Mr. Trump, two minutes?

TRUMP: Absolutely. I think it’s such a great question, because energy is under siege by the Obama administration. Under absolutely siege. The EPA, Environmental Protection Agency, is killing these energy companies. And foreign companies are now coming in buying our — buying so many of our different plants and then re-jiggering the plant so that they can take care of their oil.

We are killing — absolutely killing our energy business in this country. Now, I’m all for alternative forms of energy, including wind, including solar, et cetera. But we need much more than wind and solar.

And you look at our miners. Hillary Clinton wants to put all the miners out of business. There is a thing called clean coal. Coal will last for 1,000 years in this country. Now we have natural gas and so many other things because of technology. We have unbelievable — we have found over the last seven years, we have found tremendous wealth right under our feet. So good. Especially when you have $20 trillion in debt.

I will bring our energy companies back. They’ll be able to compete. They’ll make money. They’ll pay off our national debt. They’ll pay off our tremendous budget deficits, which are tremendous. But we are putting our energy companies out of business. We have to bring back our workers.

You take a look at what’s happening to steel and the cost of steel and China dumping vast amounts of steel all over the United States, which essentially is killing our steelworkers and our steel companies. We have to guard our energy companies. We have to make it possible.

The EPA is so restrictive that they are putting our energy companies out of business. And all you have to do is go to a great place like West Virginia or places like Ohio, which is phenomenal, or places like Pennsylvania and you see what they’re doing to the people, miners and others in the energy business. It’s a disgrace.

COOPER: Your time is up. Thank you.

TRUMP: It’s an absolute disgrace.

COOPER: Secretary Clinton, two minutes.

CLINTON: And actually — well, that was very interesting. First of all, China is illegally dumping steel in the United States and Donald Trump is buying it to build his buildings, putting steelworkers and American steel plants out of business. That’s something that I fought against as a senator and that I would have a trade prosecutor to make sure that we don’t get taken advantage of by China on steel or anything else.

You know, because it sounds like you’re in the business or you’re aware of people in the business — you know that we are now for the first time ever energy-independent. We are not dependent upon the Middle East. But the Middle East still controls a lot of the prices. So the price of oil has been way down. And that has had a damaging effect on a lot of the oil companies, right? We are, however, producing a lot of natural gas, which serves as a bridge to more renewable fuels. And I think that’s an important transition.

We’ve got to remain energy-independent. It gives us much more power and freedom than to be worried about what goes on in the Middle East. We have enough worries over there without having to worry about that.

So I have a comprehensive energy policy, but it really does include fighting climate change, because I think that is a serious problem. And I support moving toward more clean, renewable energy as quickly as we can, because I think we can be the 21st century clean energy superpower and create millions of new jobs and businesses.

But I also want to be sure that we don’t leave people behind. That’s why I’m the only candidate from the very beginning of this campaign who had a plan to help us revitalize coal country, because those coal miners and their fathers and their grandfathers, they dug that coal out. A lot of them lost their lives. They were injured, but they turned the lights on and they powered their factories. I don’t want to walk away from them. So we’ve got to do something for them.

COOPER: Secretary Clinton…

CLINTON: But the price of coal is down worldwide. So we have to look at this comprehensively.

COOPER: Your time is up.

CLINTON: And that’s exactly what I have proposed. I hope you will go to HillaryClinton.com and look at my entire policy.

Third Debate

Wallace repeats the first debate’s question about job creation, and Clinton gives a similar response. Later, Wallace asks about Clinton’s call for a “hemispheric common market,” which she says refers to her dream of an “energy system that crosses borders.” She does not elaborate on that.

CLINTON: I want us to have the biggest jobs program since World War II, jobs and infrastructure and advanced manufacturing. I think we can compete with high wage countries, and I believe we should. New jobs and clean energy not only to fight climate change, which is a serious problem, but to create new opportunities and new business I want us to do more to help small businesses.
WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, I want to clear up your position on this issue because in a speech you gave to a Brazilian bank for which you were paid $225,000 we’ve learned from the Wikileaks that you said this and I want to quote, “my dream is a hemispheric common market with open trade and open borders” —

TRUMP: Thank you.

WALLACE: So that’s the question. Please, quiet, everybody. Is that your dream, open borders?

CLINTON: Well, if you went on to read the rest of the sentence, I was talking about energy. You know, we trade more energy with our neighbors than we trade with the rest of the world combined. And I do want us to have an electric grid, energy system that crosses borders. I think that would be a great benefit to us.

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