Published: Wed, February 13, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Ted Cruz Calls Green New Deal ‘Kooky’ and ‘Nutty’

Ted Cruz Calls Green New Deal ‘Kooky’ and ‘Nutty’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he will put the Democrats "Green New Deal" up for a floor vote.

The resolution calls for a 10-year "national mobilization" to move the US economy off fossil fuels, provide healthcare for all, increase wages, and expand union rights.

The name, Green New Deal, references the New Deal of the 1930s that President Franklin Roosevelt implemented to aid Americans suffering in the Great Depression by embarking on huge government-led infrastructure projects. "Of course, they won't be able to run it because they can't actually start a train under the Green New Deal".

While a number of Senate Democrats have endorsed the Green New Deal, including some who have declared presidential bids for 2020, others have exercised more caution when asked if they will support the measure. Vermont Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, who's likely to enter the Democratic primary soon, is also a supporter.

Markey predicted more Democrats would sign on as the plan gets better known and said some Republicans may back it. In July 2017, Republicans forced a vote on a single-payer health care system.

McConnell is eager to get Senate Democrats on the record about their support for the resolution introduced last week by Senator Ed Markey of MA and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of NY. Ed Markey of MA, the proposal calls for dramatic steps to virtually eliminate US greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

The proposal includes progressive agenda items like universal healthcare and a federal jobs guarantee.

"This is now a voting issue across the country", Markey said last week.

Senate GOP leaders who joined McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, at a news conference in Washington on Tuesday criticized the measure, saying it would increase energy costs.

The resolution submitted to the House and Senate makes no mention of cows or air travel.

Ocasio-Cortez countered that Trump is not equipped to give criticism of her House resolution since he "can't even read briefings written in full sentences".

Further, Ocasio-Cortez envisions upgrading all existing buildings, working with farmers to "eliminate pollution" and building charging stations for electric cars "everywhere", making high-speed rail so effective that "air travel" is unnecessary.

Corbin Trent, a spokesman for Ocasio-Cortez, said the quip about cows and airplanes was meant to be ironic, but Trump and other Republicans seized on it as an example of the plan's excesses. "Ocasio-Cortez tried to claim over the weekend that the FAQ, sent to news outlets such as NPR and uploaded on her congressional website, is not really part of the Green New Deal's policy proposals".

The forthcoming vote isn't the first or the last time Senate Republicans forced Democratic presidential hopefuls to go on the record about a liberal proposal they believe will alienate moderate voters later.

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