Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Will Robert Hurt Say Anything To Cover For His Donors?

Is there anything State Sen. Robert Hurt (R-Chatham) won't do for his donors at Appalachian Power? How about blaming their high rates on laws that don't actually exist? Yup, Robert Hurt is happy to do that:
Appalachian Power had implemented a 12.8-percent rate increase on Dec. 12, an adjustment that was pending before the State Corporation Commission. Virginia law had allowed utility providers to raise rates that were pending approval before the SCC.

However, Gov. Bob McDonnell signed House and Senate bills Wednesday forcing APCo to suspend the pending increase to provide relief for power customers in the commonwealth. The bills were sponsored by Del. Bill Carrico, R-Grayson County, and Sen. Phillip Puckett, D-Russell County. [...]

Sen. Robert Hurt, R-Chatham, said state and federal environmental regulations have played a role in rising energy rates. The federal “cap-and-trade” passed by the House of Representatives last year is an example of the “devastating policies” that affect people’s lives, forcing companies to raise rates to revamp their facilities to follow environmental rules.
For some reason, reporter John Crane of the Danville Register Bee doesn't make this clear, so I will: Carbon regulations do not actually exist yet. Just because something passes the House doesn't make it a law, and so far, the Senate has failed to act on clean energy & climate legislation. This is like blaming your high medical bills on the health insurance reform that hasn't passed yet.

But it's not surprising that Robert Hurt is willing to say anything to cover for Appalachian Power. The polluting power company has contributed $3,250 to Hurt's campaigns since 2001. That's just a fraction of the $64,717 Hurt has received from energy companies over that period, including $20,750 from electric utilities.

Whether you agree with Rep. Tom Perriello's policy positions or not, at least you know what he stands for. Can anyone claim they really know what Robert Hurt stands for -- or do we just know what he'll say to please his donors in hopes of getting elected?

Cross-posted from Blue Virginia
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