Biden Doesn’t Control His Own Climate Policies

Biden Doesn’t Control His Own Climate Policies

June 22, 2020

Throughout the Democratic presidential primary campaign, Vice President Joe Biden flip-flopped back and forth on banning fracking. Fracking is a major issue in battleground states, where hundreds of thousands of good-paying jobs depend on the industry – this has complicated his ability to appease both far-left and moderate voters. Less than five months from election day, Democrats’ climate policy is still unclear.

Most recently, Biden has said that he won’t ban fracking. Normally, a presidential nominee making that type of claim would define his party’s policy position – not this time. After winning the nomination, Biden named the radical Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) as co-chair of the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) climate advisory panel. Subsequently, and not surprisingly, the DNC Environment and Climate Crisis Council issued a report that called for “legislation permanently banning fracking and enhanced oil recovery and initiate a managed phaseout of existing operations.” 

Steve Milloy, former member of President Trump’s EPA transition team, wrote in Real Clear Markets:

Panicked Democrats are now trying to back away from the DNC report calling for the fracking ban. A “senior Democrat familiar with the DNC’s workings” said to Reuters of the recommended fracking ban, “It’s a nonstarter.” About the Ocasio-Cortez-led DNC climate panel, the understandably anonymous source said, “Nobody takes them seriously.”

According to a Washington Post-ABC News poll taken last month, only 28% of Democratic voters are “very enthusiastic” about supporting Biden. He won the nomination because many believe that his perception as a “moderate” is the Democratic party’s best chance to beat President Trump, but he continues to contradict that perception.

In an op-ed written by transgender Democrat activist Charlotte Clymer, “Take heart, progressives: When the party moves left, Biden has always followed.” Clymer noted, “Those who worry Biden won’t absorb enough of [Bernie] Sanders’s values and positions — whether on climate change, holding corporate corruption accountable or ensuring relief on crushing student debt — should consider his history of evolution.”

As Biden continues to pander to the far left and demonstrate an ability to be bullied by progressives, it becomes harder and harder for moderate voters to believe that he is actually in control of his policy platform.

Biden may deny he would ban fracking. But the question for voters should be, would it really be up to him?