While the immigration standoff between Lindsey Graham and Harry Reid over immigration legislation continues to make headlines, the future of climate legislation hangs in the balance. However, Graham’s support of changing America’s energy and climate policy may have already reframed the debate on climate change.
Until Graham’s involvement in America’s energy path, addressing climate change was for the mostly a partisan politcal issue supported by Democrats and protested by Republicans. Graham has found an area of common interest: restoring America’s energy independence.
In a blog post on Christian Coalition of America, a site that espouses a banner stating “Will you stand with us as we stand against the left?”, a guest author gives strong support to Graham for supporting his energy/climate bill work and striving to get America off its dependence to foreign oil and create jobs at home. The author also concedes that carbon is causing harm to the environment and that something needs to be done.
Graham has suddenly made it easy, patriotic, and even sexy for conservatives to jump on the clean energy band wagon because he’s speaking in language they understand. For whatever reason, many conservatives see global warming as an exaggeration of the classic liberal cry that the sky is falling, but Sen. Graham puts the energy in the context of keeping jobs and economic growth at home. Democrats have made similar links between energy and jobs, but as a symbol of authority in the Republican party, Graham gives conservatives permission to get behind the bill.