With tongues in cheeks, Perlmutter and Salazar welcome Republicans to renewables

U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., and Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo., are lauding a group of 11 Republican congressmembers’ first visit this afternoon to the National Renewable Energy Lab as better late than never, with the emphasis on late.

“NREL is the finest renewable energy research lab in the world, and while it is better late than never for the Republicans to come learn about the important work of this lab, under Republican leadership funding for this lab and renewable energy projects steadily decreased,” Perlmutter said in a statement released Thursday. “Once Democrats took control in 2007, funding for the lab increased, 100 new jobs were created and renewable and alternative energy research is once again a priority.” 

The two Colorado Democrats plan to hold a press conference “welcoming” House Minority Leader John Boehner and other House Republicans in Golden, west of Denver, at 1:45 p.m. and using the occasion to rehash their own track records of support for NREL.

Salazar and Perlmutter’s reps said both the senator and congressman have visited NREL countless numbers of times.

Although, Perlmutter’s own spokeswoman admits he lives less than a mile from the lab’s Golden headquarters, making his commute slightly easier than, say, Boehner, R-Ohio, and NREL’s other out-of-state Republican visitors. Rep. Doug Lamborn, from Colorado Springs, is the only Colorado member of the delegation.

A Lamborn spokeswoman did not immediately return a call seeking a comment about his supposed tardiness.

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J.C. O'Connell

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