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Public Statements

American Clean Energy And Security Act Of 2009

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. BUTTERFIELD. I want to thank the chairman of the committee for giving me this very precious time this afternoon.

Madam Speaker, the House of Representatives is ready today to pass this historic legislation that will literally save the planet. You can call it a cap-and-tax all you want. You can say that the science does not support this legislation. You can say that the scientists are wrong. But I say, Republicans are wrong on this issue. We cannot afford to wait any longer to enact this legislation that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Chairman Waxman and Chairman Markey should each be commended for their extraordinary work in reaching a good compromise that will now allow this legislation to advance to the other body.

It saddens me that our Republican friends were not partners with us as we crafted this legislation, but Democrats understand the mandate of the American people, and we are moving forward. One of my roles as the vice chairman of the Energy subcommittee was to ensure that any increase in costs to consumers would be painless. So 15 percent of the allowances will be dedicated to providing a safety net for the lowest-income Americans. My district is one of the poorest districts in America. My constituents are low-income families, and they need the assurance that their goods and services will not dramatically increase. I am pleased with the report from the Congressional Budget Office that estimates that low-income households will actually see a net gain, not a loss, of $40 per year as a result of the legislation in 2020. The CBO also says that it is estimated that as a result of this legislation, the average cost per household will be, as the gentleman from the State of Washington said, 48 cents a day.

I ask my colleagues to join with me in voting ``yes'' on this important legislation.

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