Republicans like to think of themselves as the party of Reagan, but it is interesting to consider how if Reagan were a politician today he would almost certainly be branded a RINO, and voted out by the Tea Party know nothings. After all, Reagan passed strong gun control legislation, raised taxes, and gave amnesty to 3 million illegal immigrants. Wow.
But there is new evidence, memos released last week from the Reagan and elder Bush administrations, which show a White House eager to assert leadership in environmental issues including climate change and ozone depletion (it was Reagan who promoted and signed the law banning chlorofluorocarbons).
Most interesting is a memo from 1980, which argues that the US should take a leadership role on climate change, which was just beginning to draw attention back then. The memo calls the threat of climate change “the most far reaching environmental issue of our time.” It also quotes then Secretary of State James Baker:
As you yourself stated, we cannot wait until all the uncertainties have been resolved before we act to limit greenhouse gas emissions and to prepare for whatever climate change we are already committed to.
Compare this to what the current (keystone cop) crop of GOP presidential candidates are saying about climate change. For example, Donald Trump dismissing climate change, saying he is “not a believer” and accusing the crisis as something “created by and for the Chinese”.
Or Chris Christie saying on TV “It’s not a crisis. I don’t see evidence that it’s a crisis. I don’t.”
So, my question is, when did it become required for Republicans to be so aggressively stupid? Was it when the Koch brothers and big oil started paying them lots of money to be so?