No really…that’s what they did. I think this is the elusive triple-crown of fail.
A Republican campaign to defend America against a sweeping assault on personal freedoms – or energy-saving lightbulbs as they are more commonly known – went down in defeat on Tuesday night.
The result is a rejection of one of the great causes of the conservative Tea Party movement: the repeal of a 2007 law promoting environmentally efficient lighting.
Presidential contender Michele Bachmann and talk show hosts Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck had dismissed the legislation as an assault on personal freedom.
In a speech in New Orleans last month Bachmann declared: “President Bachmann will allow you to buy any lightbulb you want.”
But Tuesday night’s vote in the House of Representatives failed to muster the two-thirds majority needed under special rules invoked by Republicans to fasttrack the repeal.
So what’s the triple fail here.
1) They didn’t even pass the ban.
2) It’s idiotic. These bulbs save money and energy are are a marked improvement over really old technology.
3) IT WAS BUSH’S LAW. I mean…seriously….
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (Pub.L. 110-140 originally named the Clean Energy Act of 2007) is an Act of Congress concerning the energy policy of the United States. As part of the Democratic Party’s100-Hour Plan during the 110th Congress, it was introduced in the United States House of Representatives by Representative Nick Rahall of West Virginia, along with 198 cosponsors. Despite Rahall becoming 1 of only 4 Democrats to oppose the final bill, it passed in the House without amendment in January 2007. When the Act was introduced in the Senate in June 2007, it was combined with Senate Bill S. 1419: Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007. This amended version passed the Senate on June 21, 2007. After further amendments and negotiation between the House and Senate, a revised bill passed both houses on December 18, 2007 and President Bush, a Republican, signed it into law on December 19, 2007 in response to his “Twenty in Ten” challenge to reduce gasoline consumption by 20% in 10 years.
So when you see Bachmann and Barton holding up CFL’s as some sort of sign about how Obama is some sort of diabolical light-bulb eating machine, just remember who’s name is on the bill.
This is just another illustration of how crazy-dumb the GOP has gotten in the last few years (and recall…this was from a starting point of the end of the Bush Years).
UPDATE: It should also be noted that 17 GOP Congressmen both voted FOR the bill when it was passed in 2007, and AGAINST the bill in 2011 after they decided it was Obama who signed it.
The party cast the 2007 measure, which was signed into law by George Bush, as an outright ban on the familiar 100 watt bulb, and even an affront to its inventor Thomas Edison. In their view encouraging the adoption of curly lightbulbs was yet another example of government overreach by Barack Obama.
Saving the lightbulb was not a traditional Republican cause, however. The original 2007 bill had strong Republican support; it was even crafted in part by Fred Upton, now the chair of the House energy and commerce committee. Upton, anxious to reinforce his conservative credentials, has since recanted: he voted for the repeal of the measure.
The defence of the 100 watt bulb seemed in the Republican mind to be a winner until the run-up to the vote, when lighting manufacturers such as Philips and General Electric joined the White House, Democrats, and environmental organisations in opposing the Republican campaign.
Steven Chu, the energy secretary, told reporters last week the 2007 measure was actually aimed at raising efficiency standards for all new bulbs by more than 25% beginning in 2012.
The companies pointed out, meanwhile, that they were already shifting to newer LED and compact fluorescent bulbs.