Michigan Democrats Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow are among U.S. senators atop the 2013 National Environmental Scorecard released last week by the League of Conservation Voters.
But their 100 percent score in the LCV ranking contrasts with a 37 percent overall score for Michigan’s 15-member House delegation, which ranks slightly above neighbors Indiana and Ohio and below Wisconsin and Minnesota (which had a 49% score.)
The Michigan LCV said the national scorecard “reflects a jarring disconnect between a record-breaking year of climate change impacts and an unprecedented amount of anti-environmental legislation, particularly from the U.S. House of Representatives, during the first session of the 113th Congress.”
Most of the state’s GOP House members had 4 percent “correct” votes on the LCV ranking, including those representing northern Michigan — Reps. Dan Benishek of Crystal Falls, Dave Camp of Midland and Bill Huizenga of Zeeland.
Rep. Gary Peters of Oakland County, Democratic nominee-in-waiting to replace Levin, was among four congressmen ranked in the 90s.
“Michigan thrives on the health and quality of its natural resources, and we are proud to have allies in Congress such as Senator Stabenow and Congressman Peters who put Pure Michigan values first,” said Lisa Wozniak, Executive Director for Michigan LCV.
“On the other hand, despite a year of floods, droughts, and record-low lake levels, climate change was clearly not on the minds of much of Michigan’s House delegation where the average score of 37 percent is troubling.”
Her announcement said the scorecard “covers votes during the first session of the 113th Congress. It includes 13 Senate votes and 28 House votes on issues ranging from public health protections and clean energy to land and wildlife conservation. It comes on the heels of another record-breaking year of climate change impacts with extreme and erratic weather that caused seven separate weather and climate disasters with price tags exceeding $1 billion.”
In another development, Wozniak partnered with state Rep. Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City, and the Michigan United Conservation Clubs for a Feb. 17 town hall meeting in Traverse City.
“We are proud to partner with State Representative Wayne Schmidt and the Michigan United Conservation Clubs to bring a town hall to Traverse City that highlights the importance of protecting Michigan’s public land. The town hall is an opportunity for citizens to voice their support for a conservation-minded land management plan and the removal of the arbitrary cap on public land acquisition.
“The cap on public land acquisition in Michigan is not rooted in sound land management principles or economics. It’s an arbitrary restriction that binds the Department of Natural Resources from making decisions based on science and facts to best preserve and protect Michigan’s forests, waterways and natural habitats. Our Traverse City members are incensed by the state legislature’s approach. We look forward to bringing their message back to Lansing to further encourage passage of the DNR’s land management plan.”
Truth Squad corrects itself (bf)
The Center for Michigan’s highly credible Bridge Magazine performs a valuable service by publishing “Truth Squad” assessments of ads and other assertions by politicians.
Earlier this month, it called “Technical Fouls” on campaigns of Gov. Rick Snyder and his Democratic challenger, ex-congressman and state legislator Mark Schauer of Battle Creek.
On Snyder for “touting job numbers that weren’t entirely earned on Snyder’s watch” in his TV ad first aired during the Super Bowl.
And on the Schauer effort for the Democratic Governors Association’s ad that “makes a strong implication—that Gov. Snyder gave tax cuts specifically to Michigan firms that send jobs overseas. The ad provides no documentation for that claim.”
Subsequently, Bridge said its report “inaccurately cited statistics on the drop in the state unemployment rate by referring to them as ‘percent’ drops We should have labeled them ‘percentage point’ drops. It also said it “mistakenly failed to credit Snyder for job numbers in January 2011, his first month in office.”
But it said, “These corrections do not change Bridge’s call of a technical foul on Snyder’s campaign for touting job numbers that weren’t entirely earned on his watch.”
George Weeks, s member of the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame, for 22 years was the political columnist for The Detroit News and previously with UPI as Lansing bureau chief and foreign editor in Washington. His weekly Michigan Politics column is syndicated by Superior Features.