Via The Denver Post:
Attorney General Cynthia Coffman deserves praise for joining a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general challenging the legality of the Environmental Protection Agency’s expensive carbon plan for new and existing power plants. Gov. John Hickenlooper’s attempt to cut her legs out from underneath her in court is the exact opposite of commendable.
The fact that Hickenlooper disagrees with Coffman and has chosen to side with the Obama administration against the interests of Coloradans is his prerogative. But to try to strip or circumvent the constitutional authority of the attorney general to represent the interests of the people of Colorado in litigation against the federal government is not only legally flawed, it’s also just plain wrong. The Colorado Supreme Court’s decision to decline Hickenlooper’s petition challenging the legality of Coffman’s lawsuit to stop implementation of federal regulations that exceed the EPA’s authority is an opportunity for the governor to re-evaluate his position.
What’s really at stake is an attempt to stop the federal government from once again harming Coloradans. The environmental disaster on the Animas River caused by the EPA is just the latest example of what happens when Washington, D.C., bureaucrats run amok. That blunder, however, could be small potatoes compared to the damage the EPA’s illegal and expensive carbon rule will do to our state.
Not only will the agency’s plan cause electricity prices to soar and have a disastrous impact on our economy, it will also completely strip our right, as afforded by the constitution, to have the state regulate electricity production. The EPA’s plan is an illegal and overreaching attempt to usurp Colorado’s power and regulate how we produce electricity. Twenty-five other states agree, and Coffman is joining them to fight back in court. Hickenlooper, however, wants to force Coffman to stand down and instead would have her turn Colorado’s decision-making authority over to bureaucrats in Washington who have no idea what’s best for our state.
Gov. Hickenlooper needs to wake up to the reality of how the EPA’s proposal will affect the 44 percent of all Colorado households that are low- or middle-income. Electricity price hikes — up to 31 percent, according to recent analysis — will be devastating for these families who spend an average of 17 percent of their after-tax income on energy costs.
Rather than choosing to play politics while Colorado’s future hangs in the balance, or continuing to pursue this fight against the attorney general in lower courts, Hickenlooper should respect the attorney general’s constitutional prerogatives and her independent responsibilities to the voters who elected her. He has no authority to derail her fight against this illegal and costly EPA rule.
Coffman is doing the right thing by fighting this EPA rule. She deserves the support of every Coloradan — especially our governor.
See the article here.
- On December 20, 2015