What Should Be Obama’s First Priority?

Tony KreindlerLast week, Washington Post blogger Chris Cillizza asked for thoughts on what Obama’s first legislative priority should be upon taking office. I submitted this comment:

President-elect Barack Obama will face a series of challenges that rival any of his modern predecessors — a damaged economy, a dangerous dependence on foreign oil, aging and inefficient U.S. infrastructure, and a deteriorating environment.

Each individually would warrant the immediate attention of the White House. But the President-elect has an historic opportunity to work with Congress on a plan to address them all. That plan should start with a cap on global warming pollution.

With that cap, we can help revitalize the economy by instantly creating new markets and new customers for U.S. manufacturers in the supply chain for clean energy technologies – think wind turbines and all of the cement and steel that go into them. We can stem the flow of petrodollars overseas, by as much as $500 billion over the next two decades by MIT estimates. And we can generate new revenue for investment in America by auctioning emissions permits – all while fighting climate change.

It’s the energy policy America needs now. President-elect Obama should begin working with Congress early in his administration to enact a cap and restore U.S. leadership in the global climate change debate.

This morning, Cilizza posted a follow-up with excerpts from "the most interesting/provocative thoughts" he received, and I was happy to see my suggestion among them: a cap on global warming pollution.

This post is by Tony Kreindler, media director for the National Climate Campaign at Environmental Defense Fund.

This entry was posted in What Others are Saying. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

One Comment

  1. maltbink
    Posted November 18, 2008 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Speaking out is American. Watch Zeitgeist the Movie online. It is the winner of the Activist Film Festival.