Editor’s note: This commentary is by Deb Billado, chairwoman of the Vermont GOP.
I am not suggesting they had anything to do with the COVID-19 pandemic happening, but Vermont Democrat/Progressives are not failing to use it as an opportunity to slip some very detrimental bills through this year’s session of the Vermont Legislature. That is what is happening right now with the so-called Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA). There are other extremely bad bills that may be passed under this cover and I will continue to speak to you about them in the future.
While most of our attention is being paid to dealing with the damage and reaction to the coronavirus, many matters are receiving less attention than they normally would or should. This is the dynamic that the liberals are relying on. I call it “sleight of hand,” and the Democrat leadership is good at using such cunning to deceive and to accomplish their perverse purposes. Unless their ruse is exposed before it is executed, we will live to regret it.
This bill, which our governor and legislative Republicans are opposed to, will allow “anyone” to bring lawsuits that will cost you, the Vermont taxpayer, if the state does not meet the unreachable emission mandate deadlines in the bill. By the time the rulemaking process, run by unaccountable bureaucrats who will never be able to be reined in, is ready to be completed, the first mandate deadline will be upon us, putting the state in danger of having to defend costly lawsuits. This is a lawyer’s dream and a taxpayer’s nightmare. John McClaughry, vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute, put it this way when In January 2020 he wrote about the GWSA;
Its passage would be a giant step toward unaccountable rule by arbitrary decree that would have astonished and alarmed two hundred years of Vermont governors and legislators, faithful to our constitution’s requirement that our government must always, in a legal way, remain accountable to the people.
Montpelier’s supermajority Democrat/Progressives have gone from one reckless climate policy to another, from a “carbon tax” to the unaffordable mandates in the GWSA. All of these will have no measurable impact on the environment, and all are harmful to working Vermonters. In his article mentioned above, John McClaughry also noted, “Will all this help defeat the climate emergency? Not detectably, of course, but it would be a virtue signal to the rest of the world: Brave Little Vermont! We have the courage to beggar our own people to battle the Menace of Climate Change!”
We must all do what we can individually and corporately that is reasonable, affordable, and sustainable to preserve and protect our environment. The GWSA measures bring about negatives that damage and discourage businesses that support and sustain Vermonters and their families, especially the young, who because of all the negatives brought about by this and other of their unworkable lawmaking passions, have caused our children to leave Vermont in pursuit of a meaningful life elsewhere. That is incredibly sad!
By proposing such a radical bill, the Democrats and Progressives in Montpelier have demonstrated that they are perfectly willing to sacrifice our state’s economic integrity in exchange for the hypothetical of a minuscule reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions.
We need balance in Montpelier now more than ever, and that is why restoring accountability under the Golden Dome this November is essential.