Republican lawmakers have made opposition to industry regulation a top priority, repeatedly framing public health and safety laws as “nanny state” “job killers.” On Wednesday, Montana Republican Congressman Alan Hale used the GOP anti-government “job killer” line to defend drunk driving. He argued that drunk driving laws were killing “small businesses” in his state– small businesses like taverns that make money and “create jobs” by sometimes sending people off into the night bubbly in the head and weaving down Montana roadways. In his ridiculous insincerity, Hale made a satire of GOP politics that would have made Jon Stewart proud.
For reference: The environmental regulations former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter put in place on oil and gas drilling in the state over the last few years have been decried by Republicans as job killers at every turn. In fact, drilling is up in Colorado. It’s just cleaner drilling.
In Washington, Colorado Republicans are now crying out that the Environmental Protection Agency is a “job killer” and must be gutted. But, as Coloradans know as well or better than most Americans, a clean healthy environment is a much greater resource than any small bump in temporary boom-cycle jobs offered by under-regulated toxic industries. That’s why surveys show Americans trust the EPA more than they trust Congress to steward our environment and natural resources.