Green Party nominee for President (Former Rep., D, GA-4)
Declare US carbon-free and nuclear-free
Q: Briefly state your position on the following issue: Global Warming.
A: The situation is now quite clear. The United States can no longer hide its truculence under the mask of weather fluctuations or unclear science. Islands are disappearing;
indigenous ways of life are threatened; indeed the world as we know it is at risk if the US continues to do nothing. Therefore, a drastic cut in emissions is necessary. This can be accomplished by using the tax code to incentivize behavior.
From retrofitting buildings, demanding new standards for all new construction, utilizing existing technologies and developing new ones, to subsidizing infrastructure rehabilitation, not only can the US reverse its deadly inaction, but it can become a
world-class leader. The US could declare itself carbon and nuclear free. It has not. The urgency of the situation has been made clear by many popular articles and films. The next step is to create the political will to change course.
Q: Briefly state your position on the following issue: Energy Policy.
A: In 2000, I voted to begin implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. In 2001, I voted to support raising CAFE standards; and to provide incentives for alternative fuels, as well
as in support of regulating wholesale electricity & gas prices. I have consistently opposed oil exploration in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge, and in 2001 supported permanently preserving Alaska's ANWR.
Source: Green Party 2008 Presidential Candidate Questionnaire
Feb 3, 2008
Leave the oil in the soil
Q: What about oil independence?
A: I would adopt a policy of "Leave the oil in the soil". Then our energy policy would utilize all of the green technologies that exist around the world.
We could have institute a jobs programs by having manufacturing plants in under-served areas that would manufacture this green technology.
Source: 2008 Green Presidential Debate moderated by Cindy Sheehan
Jan 13, 2008
Protect ANWR; fund sustainable power sources
The Bush Administration has made the environment take a back seat to their other priorities. When a global warming report came out of the Administration's own office, the Council on Environmental Quality, noting human effects on climate change, the
Administration virtually dismissed it. While in Congress, I have consistently voted to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, & to increase funding for energy efficiency, sustainable power sources, & enforcement of our existing environmental laws.
Source: Campaign website, www.cynthiaforcongress.com, "Issues"
Dec 20, 2007
Voted YES on keeping moratorium on drilling for oil offshore.
Vote to amend a bill providing for exploration & production of mineral resources on the outer Continental Shelf. The underlying bill revises the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act's guidelines for natural gas lease administration. Voting YES on the amendment would maintain the 25-year moratorium on oil and gas drilling in environmentally sensitive areas offshore. Voting NO on the amendment would lift the 25-year moratorium, and establish incentives to renegotiate existing leases that fail to include market-based price caps.
Proponents support voting YES because:
This amendment would preserve the longstanding moratorium so important to coastal States. The amendment would also preserve the underlying bill's one redeeming feature, the renegotiating of the cash-cow leases now pouring billions of dollars into already stuffed oil industry coffers.
We have only 5% of the world's population, but 30% of the world's automobiles, and we produce 45% of the world's automotive carbon
dioxide emissions. This addiction harms our environment, our economy and our national security. This underlying bill attempts to bribe coastal States into drilling off their shores by promising them a lot more money.
Opponents support voting NO because:
For 30 years, opponents of American energy have cloaked their arguments in an environmental apocalypse. They have tried to make the argument that no matter what we do, it will destroy the environment.
This amendment takes out all of the energy production. It is a callous disregard for the jobs that have been lost over the last 30 years of following an anti-energy policy. The people who work in oil and gas, their jobs are in the Middle East or Canada. We have exported their jobs. If this amendment passes, we are going to send the rest of them. We should know how important it is to create jobs in this country, to create clean natural gas in this country, so that it can be the bridge to the future.
Reference: Deep Ocean Energy Resources Act;
Bill H R 4761
; vote number 2006-354
on Jun 29, 2006
Voted NO on scheduling permitting for new oil refinieries.
Voting YES would allow floor debate on H.R.5254, the Refinery Permit Process Schedule Act, which provides for the following:
The EPA, upon the request of a state governor, shall provide scheduling and financial assistance relevant to consideration of federal refinery authorizations.
The President shall designate at least three closed military installations as potentially suitable for the construction of a refinery.
Requires that at least one such site be designated as potentially suitable for construction of a refinery to refine biomass in order to produce biofuel.
Proponents of the resolution say:
Over the last several years, we have seen gasoline prices increase steadily
In the last 24 years, our refinery capacity has dropped from 19 million barrels a day to less than 17 million barrels a day.
We must make build new refineries to meet our current demand and to prevent a loss of capacity due to another hurricane, or a terrorist attack
Opponents of the resolution say:
$3 a gallon gas is a problem, but so is global warming, and so is our dependence on fossil fuels.
Unfortunately, this bill represents another missed opportunity for strategic long-term national energy policy.
There have been no new refineries built in the US since 1976, but there has not been one convincing example of a situation where the permitting process prevented construction of a refinery.
We should reduce demand by promoting energy conservation and fuel efficient forms of transportation, and work to develop renewable sources of fuel.
Taken together, these will help America move towards energy independence. And we are going to stop providing subsidies to companies that are making record profits.
Voted NO on authorizing construction of new oil refineries.
To expedite the construction of new refining capacity in the United States, to provide reliable and affordable energy for the American people, and for other purposes including:
Authorizing the President to designate sites on Federal land for construction of new oil refineries, including at least three on closed military bases
Allowing the Secretary of Energy to enter into contracts with non-Federal entities to construct or restore new refineries that use crude oil or coal to produce gasoline or other fuel
Establishing a program to encourage carpools by giving grants to states and to evaluate the use of the Internet to link riders with carpools, assist employers establish carpool programs, and market existing programs
Authorizing any facility to use biomass debris as fuel if it meets certain standards, such as resulting from a major disaster
$2.5 million to create an education campaign about gasoline conservation
Reference: Gasoline for Americas Security Act;
Bill HR 3893
; vote number 2005-519
on Oct 7, 2005
Voted YES on raising CAFE standards; incentives for alternative fuels.
Require a combined corporate average fuel efficiency [CAFE] standard for passenger automobiles and light trucks, including sport utility vehicles, of 26 mpg in 2005 and of 27.5 mpg in 2007. It also would offer incentives for alternative fuel vehicles.
Voted YES on starting implementation of Kyoto Protocol.
Vote on an amendment that would allow the implementation of the portions of the Kyoto climate change treaty that are already allowed under law. The Kyoto protocol of 1997, which aims to reduce emissions of certain greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide, has not been ratified by the United States. The amendment would allow federal agencies, particularly the Environmental Protection Agency [EPA] to implement procedures already allowed under law that are also part of the Kyoto accord before the treaty is ratified by Congress.
Reference: Amendment sponsored by Olver, D-MA;
Bill HR 4690
; vote number 2000-323
on Jun 26, 2000
Regulate wholesale electricity & gas prices.
McKinney adopted the Progressive Caucus Position Paper:
Escalating energy costs have almost no correlation with supply and demand. Adequate capacity to supply our current energy needs is and has always been plentiful within the energy markets. Newly formed deregulated energy companies are creating an artificial shortage and reaping tremendous profits while doing so.
The Progressive Caucus Solution: Wholesale Cost-based Pricing with Refunds
In the 1930s, wholesale electricity prices and wholesale natural gas prices were regulated, and the regulations provided for refunds if unjust or unreasonable rates were found. Since the late 1970s, these laws have been methodically dismantled leaving little federal price regulations to protect consumers. However, energy prices are easily manipulated as production and delivery systems are complex. Cost-based rates for wholesale electricity, natural gas, heating oil should be established to protect consumers from unjust and unfair prices. Cost based rates allow utilities to
recover the cost of their investment and operations while also allowing a reasonable profit. This is not a price capó FERC sets prices based on a specific, professional rationale. Establishing cost-based rates ensure adequate supply is available and removes the profit incentive from shorting the market. The rates should be set retroactively to the beginning of 2000. Refunds will be issued to families and businesses who have racked up incredible debt in 2000 and 2001, paying the unreasonable and unjust charges that the energy producers, generators and wholesalers inflicted.
The Progressive Caucus advocates:
Implement wholesale cost-based pricing of electricity & natural gas to ensure consumers are not gouged. Require refunds when necessary.
Grant FERC new powers to regulate heating oil prices at the wholesale level. Cost-based pricing of heating oil will ensure consumers are protected from heating oil price spikes.
Source: Progressive Caucus' Consumer Energy Rate Relief Act 01-CPC1 on Mar 16, 2001
Preserve Alaska's ANWR instead of drilling it.
McKinney co-sponsored the Morris K. Udall Arctic Wilderness Act:
Title: To preserve the Arctic coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, as wilderness in recognition of its extraordinary natural ecosystems and for the permanent good of present and future generations of Americans.
Summary: Designates specified lands within the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as wilderness and components of the National Wilderness Preservation System [which would preclude oil exploration and drilling].
Source: House Resolution Sponsorship 01-HR770 on Feb 28, 2001
Rated 100% by the CAF, indicating support for energy independence.
McKinney scores 100% by CAF on energy issues
OnTheIssues.org interprets the 2005-2006 CAF scores as follows:
0% - 30%: opposition of energy independence (approx. 206 members)
30% - 70%: mixed record on energy independence (approx. 77 members)
70%-100%: support for energy independence (approx. 183 members)
About the CAF (from their website, www.ourfuture.org):
The Campaign for America's Future (CAF) is a center for ideas and action that works to build an enduring majority for progressive change. The Campaign advances a progressive economic agenda and a vision of the future that works for the many, not simply the few. The Campaign is leading the fight for America's priorities--against privatization of Social Security, for investment in energy independence, good jobs and a sustainable economy, for an ethical and accountable Congress and for high quality public education.
About the CAF report, "Energy Independence: Record vs. Rhetoric":
Energy independence has surfaced as a defining issue in the current elections. Are most candidates and both parties truly committed? To help distinguish the demonstrated level of support for homegrown, clean energy alternatives, we examined the voting records of current U.S. Representatives and Senators on bills vital to promoting those interests. Key pieces of legislation included goals for independence, and subsidies for the development of alternatives compared to subsidies for drilling and digging. We then compared votes on these issues with campaign contributions from major oil interests. The results show strong inverse correlations between political contributions from big oil and votes for energy independence.
Source: CAF "Energy Independence" Report 06n-CAF on Dec 31, 2006