Sen. Graham’s Perplexing Pivot to a Carbon Tax

Speaking at a climate change conference held by former Secretary of State John Kerry at Yale University, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said that he is working with Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) on a carbon tax bill. The news evokes several thoughts. 

First, Sen. Graham is a coauthor of the latest Senate health care bill, which has a limited window to pass, so it’s a bit strange that he is spending precious time at a Yale climate confab instead of whipping up votes for his bill. 

Second, it’s dismaying to see that he’s working with Sen. Whitehouse, whose simplistic yet inconsistent bloviations on “climate denial” is supremely off-putting.

Third, I wonder how this will play with South Carolina voters. In 2010, Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC) lost a primary battle by 70-29 percent after expressing support for a carbon tax. As my colleague Myron Ebell noted on “Nightline,” only incumbent politicians who are in jail lose this badly in primaries. Inglis himself blamed the lopsided defeat on his support for a carbon tax.