Jay Inslee votes to keep Cap and Trade even if it drives unemployment past 15%

Most readers here probably know the Cap and Trade bill that passed the House (HR 2454) is effectively an energy tax and will cost jobs. FactCheck.org estimates losses from 600,000 to 2.4 million jobs from the bill.


What’s even worse than the bill were the amendments that Democrats voted against in committee.


Republicans proposed some “safety guard” amendments to limit the economic damage from Cap and Trade. And Democrats, while claiming that Cap and Trade would actually help the economy, defeated all of them:


·         one to suspend the program if gas hit $5 a gallon;   (defeated 31 nay – 24 yea)

·         one to suspend the program if electricity prices doubled over 2009;   (defeated 30 nay – 19 year, ballot here)

·         and one to suspend the program if unemployment rates hit 15%.  (defeated 34 nay – 21 yea)


Voting for these amendments would have been an excellent show of confidence that Cap and Trade is really the economic growth engine that proponents assure us. Likewise, voting against such reasonable economic safety guards sends a clear message that they know Cap and Trade will come at a high price.


I saw this originally reported in the Wall Street Journal, but it didn’t cite the source or the specific congressmen.  


Votes that are made on the house floor are pretty public and easy to hold your congressmen accountable for. But these votes in committee are more difficult to track down. Thankfully, this stuff actually gets tracked, but it’s really buried. I finally found a list of the Cap and Trade (HR 2454) amendments in Energy and Commerce Committee courtesy of some GOP live blogging: http://www.gop.gov/live/09/05/19/live-blogging-the-700. You can skim through the transcript to see how bad it really was and who voted for what.


My Representative, Jay Inslee (D, WA-1), claims that Cap and Trade will actually create new jobs. Yet the ballot sheets show he voted against all of these safety guards. So Inslee explicitly voted to keep Cap and Trade even if it drives unemployment past 15%, yet has the audacity to claim Cap and Trade will create jobs.


Thankfully, Inslee finally has a serious challenger, James Watkins.