One of the few bright spots coming from the Trump administration has been his willingness to let the EPA under Scott Pruitt undo some of the damage done by the agency during the Obama administration. Unfortunately, Trump recently decided to put the GOP establishment and his 2020 ambitions ahead of America’s best interest when he overruled an effort by Pruitt to make major modifications to the Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS).
For the uninitiated, RFS requires that ever-increasing amounts of ethanol be blended into gasoline. As you’re most likely aware, most of the nation’s ethanol comes from corn, and corn-producing states are represented by a who’s-who of RINOs who love ethanol, including:
- Sens. Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst (Iowa)
- Sens. Mike Rounds and John Thune (South Dakota)
- Sen. Pat Roberts (Kansas)
- Sen. Deb Fischer (Nebraska)
Only two of these names merit a non-failing Liberty Score from Conservative Review: Grassley (C) and Ernst (D).
Unfortunately, I need to add another name to the list of someone who garners an “A” grade: Sen. Ben Sasse (NE). I call this unfortunate because Sasse has been held up as a conservative firebrand, but who’s apparently willing to put the corn lobby ahead of America’s best interest. I understand that Nebraska is a corn state, but Sasse’s position on this issue taints his conservative credentials.
I know there will be those who will point out that Trump supported the ethanol industry during the 2016 Iowa caucus; however, it should be remembered that his position was political and driven by the fact that Ted Cruz was advocating major changes to ethanol mandates, including an end to ethanol subsidies.
Trump’s EPA reversal is simply more of the same type of politics he displayed in Iowa and continues to display as president. As a man lacking any core convictions, he is tossed to and fro by whatever direction the political winds are blowing, and in the case of ethanol and the RFS, that means Trump has put King Corn ahead of America’s interest.
The Strident Conservative documented during the Obama years the incredible damage done by ethanol to consumers and the environment, and how the RFS has become nothing more than another crony-capitalist, corporate-welfare program of GOP establishment.
Regardless of the original intent of ethanol mandates, bio-fuels and the RFS are bad news for America. And Trump’s politically motivated EPA decision is, to use one of his words, “sad.”
David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative, your source for opinion that’s politically-incorrect and always “right.” His articles can also be found on RedState.com.
His daily radio commentary is nationally syndicated with Salem Radio Network and can be heard on stations across America.