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Virginia Attorney General to Tea Partiers: ‘Hold your breath’ to save trees

By Sahil Kapur
Tuesday, April 13, 2010 9:56 EDT
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Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has managed to rankle progressives time and again during his few months in office. Now, his administration is following up on its legal fight against the EPA by ruthlessly mocking environmentalists.

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli last month filed a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency following its decision to regulate carbon emissions on the basis of the Clean Air Act.

Addressing hundreds of Tea Partiers this weekend at a rally organized by the Powhatan Taxpayers’ Alliance, Cuccinelli accused the EPA of embracing an anti-science outlook to carbon emissions. Examiner.com’s Karyn McDermott caught the story.

“The Attorney General’s office is a very reactive office,” Cuccinelli said. “We wouldn’t be suing the EPA if the EPA did not abandon all semblance of science and law to put out its endangerment finding on the CO2. Now, let’s make them all happy just for a moment and everybody just hold your breath.”

Drama critics might call this an attempt to flip the script as progressives are typically the ones accusing climate change skeptics of snubbing science for political gain. Conservatives have argued that the science of anthropogenic warming is unsettled.

Enjoying his role as bomb-thrower before the fierce anti-Democratic crowd, the Virginia Attorney General wasn’t ready to let up on his provocative rhetoric.

“There you go, just a short period of time with no CO2. Now the trees are going [to] protest but at least the EPA will be happy,” he continued.

Cuccinelli also slammed Democrats’ efforts to pass climate change legislation.

“It is faster, it is more far reaching it is more economically destructive and it will take away more opportunities for future generations than cap and trade if it is ever passed,” he said. “It’s incredibly destructive with no apparent environmental benefit that anybody can demonstrate.”

Think Progress notes that the Attorney General has deemed climate science “unreliable, unverifiable and doctored.”

Cuccinelli’s litigious streak extends to other major initiatives on the Democratic agenda. Minutes after the sweeping health care law passed, he filed suit to stop the legislation.

“The first and most important part of the oath I took for this office was to defend the Constitutions of the US and Virginia and that is what we are doing in these efforts.”

 
 
 
 
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