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Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen



Who signed, who didn't

U.S. Senate, U.S. House and gubernatorial candidates were asked by organizers of the recent global warming rally to sign a pledge, committing themselves to the issue. So who did and who didn't?

U.S. Senate candidates Cris Ericson, Bernie Sanders and Rich Tarrant signed it. So did U.S. House candidates Martha Rainville and Peter Welch.

U.S. House candidate Mark Shepard did not. He said he was invited, but had other commitments and would want to study the details before committing to the pledge.

Gubernatorial candidate Scudder Parker signed the pledge. Gov. Jim Douglas did not. Douglas had other commitments, but would gladly sign the pledge, campaign manager Dennise Casey said.

Here's the pledge: "Scientists say we must begin to significantly reduce our emissions within the next 10 years if we are to avoid the most serious impacts of global warming. That is why I support the goal set by Senator Jeffords in his global warming bill - an 80 percent reduction in global warming pollution by mid-century. To achieve that goal we need to start an energy revolution. I will work to promote global warming solutions, such as a national renewable energy standard of 20 percent by 2020 and an increase in mileage standards to 40 miles per gallon." 

This whole pledge was a political ploy to be used against those who wouldn't sign it. Rainville and Tarrant signed it out of expediency. In a primary it doesn't make sense to sign something like this since the only way progressives are going to vote for Shepard (or Parke) is to knock Rainville and Tarrant out of the race.
Correction: It was a political ploy to reduce the effects of Global Warming.

Global Warming is a fact. Some of us seek to do something about it.
Pledges are bulls**t. How about actually leading instead of following?
Right. We'll stop asking our elected officials to do stuff.

Good idea.
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