Tea Party Congressman Protects US From Manatee Overlords

| Thu Jul. 28, 2011 11:00 AM PDT

At least we have Rep. Rich Nugent (R-Fla.) to protect us from the manatees.

Nugent, a first-term congressman representing Citrus County, has filed an amendment to a Department of the Interior appropriations bill that would bar the agency from protecting the manatees of Kings Bay in Florida. As I reported several weeks ago, local tea party activists, who propelled Nugent to victory last fall, are incensed about proposed protections that would make the entire bay a sanctuary for the for the giant sea mammals. Some have gone so far as to allege that the manatee protections are part of a greater, more insidious plan to instate a One World Order of sustainability.

Nugent's proposed amendment, highlighted by Brad Johnson of Think Progress, joins a long list of other measures Republicans are proposing to block government action on a variety of environmental issues. Some others that he notes:

Scott (R-Ga.): None of the funds for climate change research.
Fahrenthold (R-Texas): None of the funds to interfere with States' efforts to regulate hydraulic fracturing.
Blackburn (R-Tenn.): Prohibits the appropriated agencies from buying compact fluorescent light bulbs.
Blackburn (R-Tenn.): Bar funding for the SunWise Program, an EPA program to teach parents, teachers, and children about what they should do to protect kids from overexposure to the sun.
Fleming (R-La.): Eliminate funding for the Energy Star program.
Flores (R-Texas): None of the funds to enforce section 526 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 to prohibit federal purchases of high-carbon fuels.
Lankford (R-Okla.): None of the funds for the President's Council on Environmental Quality.
King (R-Iowa): None of the funds to enforce the Oil Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure Program.
Stivers (R-Ohio): None of the funds to regulate stationary source greenhouse gases for two years.

These are in addition to dozens of anti-environmental riders already included in the appropriations bill, like one that would open up the Grand Canyon for uranium mining.

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