Dear Representative Smith,
I write to express my disappointment with your recent vote for H.R. 2454, The American Clean Energy and Security Act.
I’ve read your statement regarding this Act and the perceived necessity for it. You write that this act is “far from perfect.” How far is it, exactly? Did you read each of the 1,000 pages, including the 300-page long list of changes? Speaking generally, how can you vote for or against a bill you have not read?
In your statement you also focus on reducing pollution. Yet by capping emissions we nearly guarantee that those pollution sources that are able will simply relocate to nations with less strict emissions standards. Thus, not only will pollution be equivalent or worse, but it comes at the cost of American jobs and the associated tax revenues.
The passage of this Act was irresponsible and ideological, and yet, unsurprising. This is the way this Congress (like the many previous to it) works.
Indeed, Congress as a whole stopped being a representative body a long time ago. Once upon a time a congressman’s primary role consisted of listening to and responding to the concerns of constituents. Today, the average congressman behaves as if his top two priorities are to look out for himself and to listen to and respond to the concerns of special interest groups and his party leaders, in that order. If we are lucky, we mere citizens (subjects?) are invited to comment on what our local representative already plans to do (cf. Patty Murray’s search for stories that support the planned healthcare ‘reform’).
I censure all those congressmen who voted either way without knowing exactly what yet another huge bill says, and those who voted without any consultation of their constituents.
Unless you change your ways, you will be remembered as yet another Congressman who put self, special interest groups, and his party above the real needs of his constituents and his country.
Benjamin W. Pratt