Feb 28, 2018

Baldwin At Odds With U.S. Iron And Steel

Post by Freedom Partners

Arlington, VA – Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin is on the air with new campaign ads claiming strong support for the U.S. iron and steel industry. But her long record puts her squarely at odds with the industry to which she’s trying to pander.

Freedom Partners spokesman Bill Riggs issued the following statement:

“Desperate to demonstrate support for American manufacturers, Tammy Baldwin is simply pandering to an industry she’s failed time and again. Through her opposition to historic tax reform that promotes manufacturing in the United States, and her support for onerous energy and environmental regulations, Baldwin has spent her entire career championing policies that have made life more difficult for American manufacturers.”

Baldwin Is Highlighting Her Support For American Iron And Steel

One Of Senator Tammy Baldwin’s First Reelection Campaign Ads Focuses On Her “Buy America” Legislation Intended To Help The American Iron And Steel Industry. “Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin will air her first TV ads Tuesday in her re-election campaign, highlighting ‘Buy America’ legislation and work on prescription drug costs. … One ad features former Neenah Foundry worker Roddy Rice and focuses on Baldwin’s push for ‘Buy America’ legislation to require American-made materials in water infrastructure projects. ‘My Buy America legislation requires government infrastructure projects to use 100 percent American iron and steel, because it’s time America buys what Wisconsin makes,’ Baldwin says in the ad.” (Bill Glauber, “Wisconsin U.S. Senate Race: Tammy Baldwin’s First Ads Focus On ‘Buy America’ And Prescription Drug Prices,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2/26/18)

But Her Record Puts Her Squarely At Odds With The Industry To Which She’s Trying To Pander

Tax Reform:

The American Iron And Steel Institute (AISI) Supports The Recently-Enacted Tax Reform Legislation, Including The Reduction Of The Corporate Tax Rate To 21 Percent. “AISI supports tax policy that encourages manufacturing activity in the United States and increases the global competitiveness of domestic steel producers. In addition to the recent reduction of the corporate tax rate, simplification of the tax code and a broadening of the tax base, continued promotion of capital investment is crucial for economic growth and job creation. … AISI urges the Administration and Congress to ensure that the tax code maintains the following key provisions: A competitive corporate tax rate – The corporate tax rate should be maintained at a level that will promote the international competitiveness of U.S. industry. The current corporate tax rate of 21 percent will generate more domestic investment, greater economic growth and new American jobs. Any future changes to the tax code should not raise the corporate rate and threaten these benefits.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Opposed Lowering The Tax Burden For American Companies, Calling Tax Reform A “Tax Giveaway To … Powerful Corporations.” “‘I think we need to make our tax system simpler and fairer for hardworking families, small businesses and manufacturers. That is what I have been working for,’ said Senator Baldwin. ‘But the Republican plan is a tax giveaway to the top 1% and powerful corporations.’” (Press Release, “U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Proposes Amendments To Republican Tax Bill,” Senator Tammy Baldwin, 11/30/17)

Clean Power Plan:

AISI Supports Continued Efforts To Repeal The Clean Power Plan, Noting The Availability And Reliability Of Electricity, Natural Gas, And Coal Are “Essential” To The Industry. “The production of steel is inherently energy intensive, and the industry consumes substantial amounts of electricity, natural gas, and coal and coke to make its products. The availability and reliability of supplies of these energy sources is essential to the industry’s international competitiveness, especially as steelmakers in competitor nations receive subsidized energy. … AISI urges the Administration and Congress to undertake the following actions in 2018: EPA Regulation of GHG Emissions from Electric Utilities – The EPA should continue its efforts to repeal the Clean Power Plan (CPP) and the New Source Performance Standard (NSPS) for utility GHG emissions and replace them with rules that ensure the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturers.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Praised The Clean Power Plan As “A Bold Proposal That Offers Guidelines And The Opportunity For A State-Federal Partnership To Cut Carbon Pollution From Existing Power Plants.” “The question is not whether climate change is occurring, but how America is going to take it on. Let there be no doubt, global climate change is real, it is a fact that we must confront.  Our Wisconsin economy faces a growing threat from climate change that demands action. The Clean Power Plan is a bold proposal that offers guidelines and the opportunity for a state-federal partnership to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants, the single largest source of carbon pollution in the United States.” (Press Release, “U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Statement On Administration Announcement Of Clean Power Plan,” Senator Tammy Baldwin, 6/3/14)

  • Baldwin Has Criticized Efforts To Repeal The Clean Power Plan. “We should meet the challenge of taking on climate change with a state-federal partnership to cut carbon pollution, not walk away from it.” (Senator Tammy Baldwin Twitter, 10/10/17)

Oil And Gas Drilling:

AISI Supports The Issuance Of A Final 2019-2024 Five-Year-Program For The Outer Continental Shelf That Permits Natural Gas And Oil Exploration. “Domestic Oil and Natural Gas Production – Congress and the Interior Department should enact federal policy efforts that expand the production of domestic energy sources. In particular, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) should issue a final 2019-2024 Five-Year-Program for the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) that permits natural gas and oil exploration and production in key OCS areas.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Signed A Letter Signaling Her “Strong Opposition” To The Issuance Of A Draft 2019-2024 Outer Continental Shelf Oil And Gas Leasing Program And Opening The Area To Fossil Fuel Development. “We write in strong opposition to your agency’s misuse of taxpayer funds and agency resources to issue a draft 2019-2024 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program in the middle of the current 2017-2022 Five-Year Plan. This draft proposal is an ill-advised effort to circumvent public and scientific input, and we object to sacrificing public trust, community safety, and economic security for the interests of the oil industry. We urge you to abandon this effort and maintain the protections outlined in the current 2017-2022 plan. … We are deeply troubled by your decision to open more than 90% of the outer continental shelf to fossil fuel development and needlessly put our coastal residents, businesses, oceans, and climate at grave risk.” (Press Release, “Schumer, Gillibrand And 34 Senate Colleagues Push Back On Trump Administration’s Offshore Drilling Reversal,” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, 1/11/18)

Methane Emissions Rule:

AISI Supports The Repeal Of 2016 Regulation On Methane Emissions From Oil And Gas Production On Bureau Of Land Management Lands. “The Interior Department should continue its efforts to overturn the duplicative 2016 regulation of methane emissions from oil and gas production on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Signed A Letter Signaling Her “Strong Opposition” To Repealing The Methane Waste Rule. “We write in strong opposition to the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) recent announcement that it intends to pursue a new rulemaking to repeal or revise the agency’s methane waste prevention rule and any unlawful attempts to delay enforcement of the existing rule.” (Senator Tammy Baldwin, Et Al., Letter To Secretary Of The Interior Ryan Zinke, 11/2/17)

Waters Of The United States (WOTUS):

AISI Supports Drafting A New WOTUS Rule To Replace The Current Rule With A “Common Sense, Protective And Workable CWA Jurisdictional Rule.” “Clean Water Act (CWA) Jurisdiction – EPA and the US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) should draft a new Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule to replace the current WOTUS rule that has been stayed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit pending court review. EPA and the Corps should request that that the court hold the litigation in abeyance, allowing the agency to rescind the August 2015 WOTUS rules and draft a new proposal that provides a common sense, protective and workable CWA jurisdictional rule.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Voted Against S. J. Res. 22 In 2015. (S. J. Res. 22, Roll Call Vote #297: Passed 53-44: R 50-1; D 3-41; I 0-2, 11/4/15, Baldwin Voted Nay)

  • J. Res. 22 Would Have Nullified WOTUS. “This joint resolution nullifies the rule submitted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency relating to the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ under the Clean Water Act and published on June 29, 2015.” (“S.J.Res.22,” Congress.gov, 1/13/16)

Baldwin Also Signed Onto A Letter To EPA Administrator Pruitt Asking To Extend The Public Comment Period For EPA’s Proposal To Rescind The 2015 Clean Water Rule. “Yesterday, 22 Senate Democrats, led by U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, sent a letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt and Army Corps of Engineers Deputy Assistant Secretary Douglas Lamont urging them to extend the 30-day public comment period for EPA’s proposal to rescind the 2015 Clean Water Rule. … Signing the letter were Senators Tom Carper, Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Jeff Merkley D-Ore.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).” (Press Release, “Senators Press EPA, Army Corps To Extend Comment Period For Clean Water Rule Rewrite,” U.S. Senate Committee On Environment And Public Works Minority, 7/19/17)

Federal Financial Assurance Requirements For Hardrock Mining:

AISI Supports The EPA’s Recently Promulgated CERCLA Rule, Which Imposed No Federal Financial Assurance Requirements For The Hardrock Mining Sector. “Additionally, EPA recently promulgated the final Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) Sec. 108b rule, which imposed no federal financial assurance requirements for the hardrock mining sector. Should this action come under judicial challenge, AISI will support EPA as it defends this rule.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Signed A Letter Signaling Her “Serious Disappointment” With The EPA’s Recently Promulgated CERCLA Rule, Arguing That “The EPA Has Allowed The Mining Industry To Make Empty Promises.” “We write to express our serious disappointment with your decision to not issue federal financial responsibility requirements for hard rock mining operations in the United States. The EPA has allowed the mining industry to make empty promises about securing bonding and other financial assurances for nearly forty years while at the same time shifting the burden and costs for hazardous waste cleanup to the American taxpayers. By conjuring up the baseless determination that there is no risk of taxpayer funded cleanups from hard rock mining and therefore not requiring assurances, you are assuring that we will continue to create high-cost environmental disasters. These risks are man-made and completely avoidable with common-sense rules which were envisioned and mandated by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA).” (Press Release, “Udall, Senate Democrats: EPA Putting Taxpayers On The Hook For Hard Rock Mining Disasters,” Senator Tom Udall, 1/17/18)

Regulations From The Executive In Need Of Scrutiny (REINS) Act:

AISI Supports Regulatory Reform Legislation That Would Require Congressional Approval Of Major Rules Before They Could Take Effect. “Regulatory Reform Legislation – Congress should pass regulatory reform legislation to provide much needed accountability and oversight of federal regulatory agencies. This legislation could include requiring regulatory agencies to promote coordination, simplification, and harmonization of agency rules, to examine whether existing rules have contributed to the problem being addressed through regulation, and even could require a joint resolution of approval of major rules before such rules can take effect.” (“2018 Public Policy Agenda,” American Iron And Steel Institute, 2/15/18)

Baldwin Voted Against The REINS Act Of 2011. (H.R. 10, Roll Call Vote #901: Passed 241-184: R 237-0; D 4-184, 12/7/11, Baldwin Voted No)

The REINS Act Of 2011 Would Have Made Any Major Regulations Subject To Congressional Approval. “The House on Wednesday approved a measure that would increase Congress’s authority over the executive branch by making any major regulations subject to its approval. The REINS Act, H.R. 10, also known as the Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act, passed the House on a 241-to-184 vote, with four Democrats joining all Republicans present to vote ‘yes.’ The measure was sponsored in January by Rep. Geoff Davis (R-Ky.).” (Felicia Sonmez, “REINS Bill To Expand Congressional Power Over Executive Regulations Passed By House,” The Washington Post, 12/7/11)