Obama Climate Change Campaign Targets Colorado Lawmakers

July 17, 2013
By
The Obama campaign is urging its followers to "call out" certain members of Congress on the issue of global warming

Obama’s campaign urged followers to “call out” Colo. congressmen on the issue of global warming

WASHINGTON — As if Smokey Bear didn’t have enough to worry about with drought, lightning strikes and bug infestations turning trees into forest fire tinder, now global warming is being blamed for the deadly blazes throughout the west.

President Barack Obama has made the link a key part of his climate change agenda, along with too much rain, not enough rain, too much heat in the summer, and not enough snow in the winter.

And his presidential campaign committee that now acts as a social welfare organization is targeting members of Congress including three Colorado Republicans who disagree with him.

“The potential impacts go beyond rising sea levels,” Obama said during his recent keynote climate change address.

“Here at home, 2012 was the warmest year in our history. Midwest farms were parched by the worst drought since the Dust Bowl, and then drenched by the wettest spring on record. Western wildfires scorched an area larger than the state of Maryland.  Just last week, a heat wave in Alaska shot temperatures into the 90s,” Obama said.

“Firefighters are braving longer wildfire seasons, and states and federal governments have to figure out how to budget for that,” Obama said.

“I had to sit on a meeting with the Department of Interior and Agriculture and some of the rest of my team just to figure out how we’re going to pay for more and more expensive fire seasons. Americans across the country are already paying the price of inaction in insurance premiums, state and local taxes, and the costs of rebuilding and disaster relief,” Obama said.

A recent fatal wildfire in Arizona that resulted from a lightning strike and killed 19 firefighters is the latest natural disaster to be blamed on climate change.

Top Obama administration officials told Congress last week during a hearing on forest fires that a significant focus of their future efforts to prevent forest fires would reflect that shift of priorities.

“The largest issue is how we adapt our management to anticipate climate change impacts and begin to mitigate their potential effects,” said James Hubbard, Forest Service deputy chief.

As the Obama administration proposes multiple new projects to prevent climate change, they want Congress to cut millions in spending next year to clear downed trees and other fire hazards on federal lands that are fueling the wildfires.

The budget cut amounts to 37 percent in 2014, down to $115 million in spending nationwide. Meanwhile, Colorado has spent $30 million since 2007 for fuel mitigation projects.

Joseph Duda, Colorado deputy state forester, also appeared before the House Resources Committee hearing and said that nearly seven million acres of trees in the state are at risk from forest fires, having been severely impacted by bark beetles since 1996.

“Drought and climate change have contributed to this scenario, but the condition of the forests is the primary underlying factor, with nearly homogenous landscapes of mature, single-age stands that are overly dense and stressed from competing for nutrients and water. In other words, they are ripe for insect attacks and destructive wildfires,” Duda said.

While Obama focuses on carbon emissions as the cause of wildfires, Colorado Republican Rep. Scott Tipton says wildfires are the cause of significant carbon emissions.

If Obama is truly interested in reducing carbon emissions, the focus should remain on fire prevention, not just lamenting the cause, Tipton said.

“Wildfire can often emit more carbon in a few weeks than all of the cars in that state do in a year,” Tipton said.

“This was the case with the Hayman Fire in Colorado, and will likely be the case with the West Fork Complex Fire,” Tipton said.

Carbon emissions from wildfires are expected to increase 50 percent by the year 2050, according to a report from Auburn University and George Mason University.

“When trees grow they absorb carbon, but when a tree dies, like the thousands of acres of dead bark beetle trees that cover our hillsides, it starts to release carbon slowly as it decomposes, or rapidly when it burns,” Tipton said.

“The failure to address responsible forest management for the health, the natural environment, and for the safety of our communities simply defies logic,” Tipton said.

Even though extreme weather has plagued mankind since the dawn of time, Obama ridicules anyone who questions his claims and an offshoot of his presidential campaign, Organizing for Action, is targeting lawmakers who disagree with him.

The campaign is urging followers to “call out” certain members of Congress on Twitter, including Reps. Cory Gardner, Doug Lamborn, and Tipton.

“Scott Tipton conceded that climate change exists, but argued that it’s caused by natural climate cycles rather than humans,” the campaign says on its webpage.

Gardner and Lamborn also made the list for questioning the causes of global warming and the long-term effects.

Another arm of the Democratic Party, Media Matters, is criticizing western newspapers that do not blame climate change on devastating wildfires.

“A survey of papers in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah found that coverage of recent wildfires only mentioned the role of climate change about 4.5 percent of the time — less than half as often as major national papers (9.4 percent),” Media Matters said last week.

Comments made by visitors are not representative of The Colorado Observer staff.

7 Responses to Obama Climate Change Campaign Targets Colorado Lawmakers

  1. Dave
    July 17, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    All the idiot does is flap his jaws

  2. July 17, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    It’s interesting that you vaguely allude to the Organizing for America campaign and indeed the one attempt that I personally had in attempting to work with this organization there was one clear point made – that the new O.F.A. campaign would only discuss those items that have been clearly approved by the President. While having participated in activities that I’m sure that assisted in reelection, I do not consent to the way this organization has progressed. When attempting to help throw a Environmental Support Rally a month or so back, it was clear that any mention of the Keystone XL pipeline (for example) was banned and not authorized. As an entity with Grassroots base, it was quite disappointing to experience the change of behavior from that of ‘What the people want’ to ‘party line instructions’. Climate change is part of the realities of our world, but the responsibilities for reducing them lay within each of us. The effectiveness of recycling programs, expansion and use of mass transit, developing manufacturing resources for beetle kill lumber and expanding the ease of permits for clearing (and access for educating contractors) are also important factors to be considered in the solutions. The tragedy here is that national behavior changes have been demanded for over 40 years, politically it hasn’t become profitable to heed the advice of educated scientists regarding the climate because corporate interests provided a pathway to overlook such concerns.

  3. Dave
    July 17, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    So Brian
    You are another dupe.?

  4. SPQR
    July 17, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    Obama wishes to cap off his disaster two terms with permanent changes in the US economy that will cripple it for decades to come.

    He must be opposed at every turn.

    • TheQuickening
      July 19, 2013 at 9:20 am

      For over a hundred years the goal of communism has been to destroy the American economy. If they can convince people of idiocies like “man-made” global warming, they can do about anything.

      As long as we have these constant threats of the “boogey-man” there will be a legislator willing to write a “law” to convince the public they are protected. Once our economy is destroyed the remaining bits’n pieces will be easily swept into the dustbin of globalism.

  5. TheQuickening
    July 19, 2013 at 9:17 am

    We don’t take it seriously because it’s a psuedo-scientific rubric designed to allow governments to impose taxes to fight something that cannot be fought. That “something” is called the “S U N.” It’s the same thing that ended the ice age. The same thing that melted a half mile thick icecap over Northern North America -the same ice cap that dug out the Great Lakes.

    This is more of your pursuing your agenda of minimizing peoples control of their lives while maximizing the harvest of tax dollars.

    Go peddle your agenda somewhere else.

  6. Skeptic
    July 22, 2013 at 8:14 am

    “While Obama focuses on carbon emissions as the cause of wildfires, Colorado Republican Rep. Scott Tipton says wildfires are the cause of significant carbon emissions.”

    Scott Tipton seems a little confused. Obama never said carbon emissions were the cause of wildfires, he suggested climate change makes wildfires worse. On the other hand, although Tipton says, “wildfires are the cause of significant carbon emissions.”, the net effect is zero because as Tipton also says, “When trees grow they absorb carbon, but when a tree dies, like the thousands of acres of dead bark beetle trees that cover our hillsides, it starts to release carbon slowly as it decomposes, or rapidly when it burns,”

    On the third hand, why is Tipton even concerned about how much carbon wildfires produce because, ““Scott Tipton conceded that climate change exists, but argued that it’s caused by natural climate cycles rather than humans,” the campaign says on its webpage.

    It seems like whenever Tipton speaks, he expresses at least 3 opinions.

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