Nevada Debate Impressions, Volume 4

Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository hits debate stage. The importance of this issue to Nevada residents, even the newest arrivals, cannot be overstated. Clinton makes it clear she opposed final approval of the repository over her husband's veto and the veto of then-Nevada Gov. Kenny Guinn. This gave Clinton a core of consistency on the issue. Obama called the repository a bad idea and said as president he would call together an elite panel of experts to review alternatives to Yucca Mountain (in Nevada deep resentment remains that the state wasn't chosen because it was the best possible site, but because in 1987 its congressional delegation was impotent to stop it). Edwards had to defend two votes to designate Yucca Mountain the final repository for nuclear waste and tried to excuse them by saying new revelations about the science behind Yucca Mountain and forged Department of Energy documents would have led him to vote differently (not exactly a confidence builder in light of Edwards already in this campaign saying he also would have voted differently on the Iraq war, the Patriot Act, the Bankruptcy bill and Yucca Mountain).