Traverse City Record-Eagle

Opinion

February 24, 2013

George Weeks: Low green score for state in House

The Michigan League of Conservation Voters last week praised Sen. Carl Levin’s 100 percent pro-environmental 2012 voting record but branded as “dismal” the average of the state’s 15-member House delegation. Still, the average was better than those in five other Great Lakes states.

Michigan LCV Executive Director Lisa Wozniak said: “No other state in the country values its land, air and water as much as Michigan, the Great Lakes state, and we are proud to have such allies” as Levin and Rep. Gary Peters, D-Bloomfield Township, who had a 94 percent rating on the national LCV scorecard.

Although others among the five Democrats had equal or better scores than Peters, state LCV Political Director Jack Schmitt said he was cited because he had the most improved score.

The national LCV gave a solid 86 percent score to Sen. Debbie Stabenow, who has worked across party lines on evasive species and other Great Lakes issues with such congressmen as Dave Camp, R-Midland. Camp and Rep. Dan Benishek, R-Crystal Falls, received scores of 9. The other congressman with northern counties in his district, Bill, Huizenga, R-Zeeland, received an 11.

The scorecard included 14 votes in the Democratic-ruled Senate, and 35 in the GOP-controlled House, on issues ranging from public health protections to clean energy to land and wildlife conservation.

National LCV President Gene Karpinski said the House “sided with corporate polluters time and time again in 2012, cementing its status as the most anti-environmental House in our nation’s history. The best that can be said about this session of the 112th Congress is that it is over.”

The Snyder Watch

Governor Rick Snyder is dealing with a number of Great Lakes issues, including coming up with funds to dredge harbors to cope with record low water levels in lakes Michigan and Huron, and preparations for a summit of Great Lakes governors on Mackinac Island in June.

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