Florida Democrats — The ‘We Too’ Party

Well, she’s gone and done it again. Karen Thurman, chair of the Florida Democratic Party, has issued another one of her rah-rah memos rallying FlaDems to — save the environment! Sorry, Karen, Eco-Charlie, he of the eternal tan and immovable white mane, stole that issue away from the Dems last week at his climate change summit in Miami.

It took the Democratics a full week to come up with a response to try and take back the issue. Sorry folks, it’s too late. Still, Thurman seems to allege that Democratic efforts led to Gov. Crist’s conversion to greenness:

Yet, finally, it seems the Governor has seen the light.
— Karen Thurman

Sometimes, as Democrats in Florida, it can feel like we’re banging our heads against a wall, trying to talk sense into the Republicans in Tallahassee.

But if we keep trying … keep fighting … once in blue moon, we can get through to them.

Republican Gov. Charlie Crist has been a politician for a long time. For years, he stood silently by and watched Democrats promote responsible legislation dealing with the dangers of climate change, while his fellow Republicans decried global warming a “liberal myth” and friends in the Bush Administration allowed polluters to run free under laws with phony names like “Clear Skies Act.”

Yet, finally, it seems the Governor has seen the light.

On the issue of climate change, Democratic leaders have paved the way. Now the Governor, too, recognizes the need for action and is following suit. Unfortunately, even with his support, our leaders can’t save Florida from the dangers of climate change without your help.

Man, if word gets out that Charlie Crist had an eco-epiphany because of the Florida Democratic Party, he won’t get invited to the annual Republican Governor’s Retreat and Camp Out. Now it was rather a surprise when Crist came out all Greenpeace-y all of a sudden, but fact is, he did it and he did it Hollywood Big Time.

But the Democratic attempts to take back the green only get more desperate. Thurman exhorts FlaDems to sign the newly minted Five Point Pledge, a petition that says you agree with the measures Crist signed in executive orders last week:

  • Point 1: I support the establishment of a renewable energy standard for the state. Furthermore, I believe benchmarks should be set to require that more energy come from renewable sources in the future.
  • Point 2: I support the Governor’s Executive Order to explore a cap and trade program for industry, but I also believe we must ensure that this program will offer flexibility to industries that cannot meet the strict standards while still achieving an overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Point 3: I support programs such as a statewide net metering plan to give consumers and businesses a financial incentive to generate electricity with solar panels and other technologies.
  • Point 4: I support requiring that our full state vehicle fleet be made up of hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles as soon as possible with a program to phase out older vehicles for more environmentally friendly ones.
  • Point 5: I support the idea that Florida should be a trendsetter in the construction of energy efficient buildings by adopting green building or similar standards for all new state offices and public schools.

Well, duh, who doesn’t support those measures? But signing a petition this week doesn’t change the fact that the gov signed executive orders last week, and he had his green buddy Arnold Schwarzenegger at his side when he did it.

What’s with the “we too” stuff? Can’t the FlaDems find some other environmental initiatives to tout? Ones that Crist is against? How about the condition of the state’s endangered rivers? Oh yeah, Crist already got some major stuff through the legislature on that. OK, how about Everglades restoration? Crist has already pushed measures supporting that, too. I know, how about offshore oil drilling? Doh! Florida’s Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson already pretty much owns that issue.

Sorry Karen, et. al., you might mean well, but with this kind of follow-the-leader leadership, who needs the Democratic Party in Florida?

2 Comments

  • Pingback: 5 to Read at Florida Progressive Coalition Blog

  • joe
    July 23, 2007 - 6:07 pm | Permalink

    it sounds like a crafty strategy to pit crist against his own party. who doesn’t support those points? the republican right wing!

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