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End run: EPA skirts Congress with carbon ruling

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Modified: December 9, 2009 at 4:11 am •  Published: December 9, 2009
No one on Capitol Hill knows global warming better than Sen. Jim Inhofe, who has made it his legislative mission to stop proposals in Congress that would cripple the economy and lower Americans’ standard of living.

In that, Inhofe, R-Tulsa, has been pretty successful. Although the House of Representatives passed cap-and-trade legislation earlier this year, the Senate version is stalled because most senators believe the program would amount to an economy-wide tax.

But there’s a new concern with Monday’s announcement from the Environmental Protection Agency declaring carbon dioxide a danger to public health, opening the door to wide-ranging regulation on power plants, factories and automobiles.

Essentially, the Obama administration has announced that if Congress won’t implement draconian measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions, it will — by regulatory fiat.

The impact on business and individual Americans, who would bear the real costs of new EPA regulations, would be stunning: higher energy prices and lost jobs, for starters. Incredibly, even as the administration wrings its hands over unemployment, it’s preparing to hatch a colossal job-killing regime.

That’s if Congress doesn’t knuckle under and act. EPA’s ultimatum might change the climate in the Senate — perhaps spurred by business, believing cap and trade would be less onerous than a regulatory scheme devised by EPA bureaucrats.

Either way, Inhofe has new work cut out for him to keep an administration bent on imposing its climate-change diktats, no matter how the Senate or the public, for that matter, feels about it.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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