Daniel Turner: DNC doesn’t want a climate debate – what’s party afraid of?

It’s rare that I agree with the eco-left. In fact, it’s a small miracle that I can find common ground with those want to destroy energy jobs, decimate rural communities, and reduce our supply of inexpensive domestic energy that powers our economy and makes America great.

But now I support the eco-left on one issue: Let’s have a climate debate among Democratic presidential candidates.

The Democratic National Committee has come under fire from both eco-left activists and some 2020 presidential candidates who are calling for a candidate debate that is focused solely on climate issues. The push was first started by Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, who has staked his longshot presidential bid on being the “climate candidate.”

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No doubt the candidates themselves want to pivot to the politically safe, ethereal and unquantifiable green issues. Why draw attention to the failure of their other policies?

The list of areas where Democratic policies have turned out to be utter failures is a long one. On the national level, they include health care, job creation and controlling illegal immigration. On the local level, big cities run by Democrats are plagued by crime, poverty, homelessness and failing infrastructure.

So for a Democratic presidential candidate, an entire debate devoid of facts, success metrics, or costs might seem like a welcome reprieve from the pressure of discussing serious policy deliverables.

But the Democratic National Committee recently turned down the idea of a climate debate by presidential candidates. Committee Chairman Tom Perez said that the climate debate was not “practical,” after being pressured by eco-activists to weigh in.

Perez’s refusal set off an uproar on the left. Joined by the Sunrise Movement – an eco-extremist group working with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., to win approval for her Green New Deal – 15 Democratic presidential candidates endorsed holding a climate debate.

Even former Vice President Joe Biden, who had come under fire for his middle-ground approach to climate policy, said regarding the idea of a climate debate: “That’s what we should be doing. I’m all in, man.”

Nothing like flying to a debate with an army of journalists in tow – and broadcasting it on TV and online using cameras, lights and microphones – to blast fossil fuels, man. I wonder what bottled water would be next to each podium, and whether candidates would taste the hypocrisy with each sip.

All these crazy ideas must stay hidden if Perez wants Democratic candidates to score victories in swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan.  

From a political perspective, Perez’s opposition to the debate is smart. He has to do all he can to hide the crazy extremist ideas Democrats have embraced for as long as possible.

And let’s face it: their green policies are crazy. Nearly every Democratic presidential candidate has spoken in favor of the Green New Deal and its multitrillion-dollar price tag. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., wants to ban fracking. Biden wants to stop energy exploration on public lands.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., not only wants a Green New Deal, she wants a litany of new government bureaucracies to manage it. Somehow climate change requires hiring thousands more Washington bureaucrats as “program officers” and “project managers” making six-figure salaries.

All these crazy ideas must stay hidden if Perez wants Democratic candidates to score victories in swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan.

That’s because Americans don’t want their taxes used for trillions of dollars in fruitless spending. We don’t want higher taxes and rising utility bills. We don’t want imagined “green jobs,” especially when we have good-paying energy jobs waiting to be filled.

We don’t want to pay people “unwilling to work” and surrender hundreds of thousands of acres of land for subsidized solar panels and windmills to generate unreliable and expensive electricity under the Green New Deal.

Last year U.S. oil production grew by the largest annual increase ever recorded by a country in world history. According to a new report from the Oil Price Information Service, this boom means gasoline prices could fall to below $2 per-gallon for many Americans in 2019. All this as we continue to reduce emissions.

Our energy course needs no correction.

The fact is, America’s energy revolution has created jobs, liberated us from Middle East turmoil, and sparked life into an economy left stagnant for eight years under President Obama and Vice President Biden.

Putting the extremism of the Democratic presidential candidates on display in a nationally televised climate debate would wake Americans up to the radical, power-grabbing agenda so many Democrats have embraced.

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Perez is smart to keep all that in the dark.

But I’m hoping for a debate. As the late Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis said, “sunlight is the best disinfectant.” Especially when that sunlight is really a spotlight powered by our reliable, abundant, inexpensive domestic fossil fuels.

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