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Washington, D.C., November 8, 2006—Green Republicans who have supported higher energy prices and opposed protecting property rights suffered major losses in House and Senate elections, according to an initial analysis by the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
There were also setbacks for consumers and private property owners in the mid-term elections. The biggest loss was the defeat of Representative Richard Pombo (Calif.) of California, Chairman of the House Resources Committee. Pombo had been the number one target of several environmental political action committees in this election.
In the Senate, green Republicans Lincoln Chafee (R.I.) and Mike DeWine (Ohio) were sent packing by voters. In the House, notable green Republicans who were defeated include Representatives Charles Bass (N.H.), Jeb Bradley (N.H.), Nancy Johnson (Conn.), and Jim Leach (Iowa). The re-election race of another green Republican, Rep. Rob Simmons (Conn.), was still undecided as of Wednesday morning.
“Although many green Republicans, such as Senator Chafee stressed their environmental records, it didn’t seem to do them much good,” said Myron Ebell, CEI Director of Energy and Global Warming Policy. “It is also worth noting that groups such as the League of Conservation Voters and the Sierra Club didn’t spend any money to support their Republican allies in Congress.
“Rep. Richard Pombo’s defeat was clearly the biggest loss for those of us who support protecting property rights, reforming the Endangered Species Act, and lowering energy prices by increasing domestic energy production,” Ebell continued.
“Although the environmental and energy agenda will now be set by Democrats in the House, the ideological makeup of the House and the Senate on these issues has not changed as much as the magnitude of Republican losses would suggest,” said Ebell.
“Green Republicans were replaced by green Democrats, while conservative Republicans were mostly replaced by moderate Democrats,” Ebell said. “This means, most notably, that the prospects for enacting global warming legislation in the next Congress have not been significantly increased.”
CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government. For more information about CEI, please visit our website at www.cei.org .