Q&A With Chuck Grassley (R-IA)

by Brian McGraw on October 25, 2010

in Blog

Politicians using Q&A sessions to promote talking points and push half-truths is rarely worth looking at, though Grassley’s skillfull balance of promising everything to his constituents is an exception:

5. How would you lower or eliminate the federal budget deficit?

According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, a discretionary spending freeze would save $1.7 trillion over the next 10 years. This freeze can be accomplished by reducing wasteful spending while protecting vital programs. Congress should begin with a moratorium on congressional earmarks and continue with a ban on non-essential government travel. Congress should consolidate duplicate programs and terminate programs that fail to achieve intended results as determined by the administration’s Program Assessment Rating Tool (PART).

Talking Point 1 – Convince citizens that you’re serious about the budget woes of the U.S. without discussing any real way to solve it.

4. Do you think global climate change is a threat, and how would you deal with it?

If the United States acts alone to cap carbon dioxide, Americans would pay more for energy and goods, without any measurable impact on the climate. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson testified that unilateral action by the U.S. would provide no real environmental gain. A carbon cap without including the largest emitter, China, and other developing nations, would mean lost jobs for Americans. Any effort to reduce greenhouse gases should be made through an international agreement. The cap-and-trade legislation passed last year by the House of Representatives would increase the cost of energy for homes and businesses, especially in the Midwest.

Talking Point 2 – Increases in energy costs are bad if unmet by other countries (non-committal).

8. Do you support continued subsidies for ethanol? If so, how, if at all, would you change them?

In April, I introduced legislation to extend through 2015 the ethanol blender’s credit, the small ethanol producer tax credit, the cellulosic producer tax credit and the ethanol import tariff. Extension of these policies is the right thing to do because bio-fuels offer an alternative to foreign oil and generate economic activity in the United States. Today, ethanol comprises nearly 10 percent of the U.S. fuel supply. Ethanol produced in the Midwest replaces oil from Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Nigeria. Ethanol is good for rural economies, and a recent study found that the failure to extend the blender’s credit and the secondary tariff would result in the loss of 112,000 jobs nationwide and reduce ethanol production by nearly 40 percent. Iowa would lose the most jobs at nearly 30,000. The lapse of the separate tax credit for biodiesel, which expired at the end of 2009, also has cost jobs. Last year, 29,000 clean-energy jobs were lost nationwide and many of the remaining 23,000 jobs have disappeared with the lapse in the credit. We can’t risk a repeat performance with ethanol, where 112,000 jobs are at stake.

Talking Point 3 – Ignoring the several inaccuracies in this last question, talking point 3 involves a reminder to constituents that though he is incredibly serious about reigning in these budget deficits (and not raising energy prices), he isn’t going to cut anything near and dear to Iowa.

A question for you, Senator Grassley: What effect do you think the continued pursuit of the Renewable Fuel Standard will have on the energy prices for Americans? Instead of buying oil from foreign countries will we be spending $65.00 per gallon on fuel?

geelong dental October 30, 2010 at 12:37 am

Who wants to go on a intense diet ,right?. Eat what you wnna, just please rememebr to keep excercising

Young money family November 12, 2010 at 12:05 am

Xbox360 is one the best systems, Not only do we have Halo Reach but along side the support of xboxlive.

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