June 24, 2013

On Tuesday, President Obama will announce his plan to increase everyone’s power bill. Or, as he puts it, “a national plan to reduce carbon pollution, prepare our country for the impacts of climate change and lead global efforts to fight it.”

If you accept the science of global warming, then you accept the fact that the president’s unilateral action on climate change will have absolutely no effect in terms of adjusting the global thermostat to a temperature Obama finds desirable. The rest of the developing world, anchored by India and China, are building carbon-burning factories, power plants and even whole new cities that will overwhelm any new rules the president may impose on Americans and our struggling economy.

Other recent events confirm the president’s isolation and his lack of advisers who will challenge his biases, but even in this extreme isolation he must know his actions will have no effect on the Earth’s climate. So why is he taking this step — especially now, when our economy is so fragile? Driving up the cost of energy will, at the very least, add stress to U.S. households and further erode U.S. manufacturing.

As I have written before, I believe the president is ideologically motivated when it comes to global warming. He believes American lifestyles are unnecessarily wasteful and that we should temper our ambitions and adopt a lifestyle more to his liking. Essentially, it would suit him if we all lived in a college town and rode a bicycle. Also, I believe part of the president’s motivation for his pointless act is punitive. Obama wants to punish America for its wasteful past. But of course, the rules don’t apply to him and his family. A life of large homes, private jets, big cars and cash payments from the oil and gas industry await him in his private life. Just ask former vice president Al Gore. Voters notice that Democrats have a blind spot to the hypocrisy that surrounds global-warming politics.

The most recent poll I could find, conducted by the Pew Research Center following the president’s inaugural address, said just 28 percent of Americans think “dealing with global warming” should be a priority for the president and Congress. Americans ranked this issue last out of 21 different priorities. And as usual, the poll identified the economy as the most important issue. Well, Obama’s obsession with global warming and his desire to inflict higher energy prices on the average American family will harm the economy and be bad for job growth.

I’m trying to imagine the list of accomplishments Democrats will recite in the midterm elections next year. As a partisan Republican, I hope they rally around the proposals Obama will be announcing tomorrow, and I hope GOP leaders in the House and Senate are able to force up-or-down votes on the president’s plan. Let’s see how many Democrats who will be facing voters in 16 months will be willing to sign on to his pointless, harmful crusade.

Ed Rogers is a contributor to the PostPartisan blog, a political consultant and a veteran of the White House and several national campaigns. He is the chairman of the lobbying and communications firm BGR Group, which he founded with former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour in 1991.