On Thursday, Senator John McCain participated in an event sponsored by the Clinton Global Initiative in New York. He used the event to present himself as someone who is allied with Democrats like Gore and Clinton and other movers and shakers on clean energy.
"McCain declared his support for efforts to combat global warming," according to the Washington Post, "dropping his stump speech demands to 'drill here, drill now' in favor of more 'green' rhetoric that would appeal to the crowd at the conference."
McCain said, as quoted by the Post, said "To make the great turn away from carbon-emitting fuels, we will need all the inventive genius of which America is capable," he said. "We will need as well an economy strong enough to support our nation's great shift toward clean energy."
The Boston Globe reported: "While some in his own party, including running mate Sarah Palin, have expressed doubts about how much human activity is fueling climate change, McCain expressed no such doubts."
"We now know that fossil fuel emissions, by retaining heat within the atmosphere, threaten disastrous changes in climate," said McCain. "Over time, we must shift our entire energy economy toward a sustainable mix of new and cleaner power sources."
McCain was one of the first Republican senators to press for action on climate change, but he strongly supports nuclear power as the most effective "clean" energy source. His campaign and public appearances continue to contradict his voting record.
As previously reported, a look at McCain's Senate energy votes reveals that he aligns almost vote for vote with those of Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe, the member of Congress who has most strongly opposed implementing clean energy. McCain has had 50 opportunities to support the very clean energy agenda he describes, and he has taken all 50 legislative opportunities to vote against it. McCain has voted, like the majority of Republicans, against this clean energy vision.
Participants at the Clinton Global Initiative are asked to take concrete steps to tackle specific global problems before participating in the events. What commitment has McCain made to warrant his use of the Clinton Global Initiative as a backdrop for greenwashing his true record on global warming?
The next American president will be an important player in determining whether this nation can transition to a new carbon-constrained world, or will be left behind in a fossil-based economy.
Perhaps McCain's Clinton Global Initiative commitment should be to let the world know his real energy position.