John Ransom

In an attempt to push back the government overreach that has been killing jobs in the country since Obama’s red-tape machine arrived in DC, Texas has decided to sue the EPA over rules that threaten to shut down coal fired plants.

Texas, under Governor Rick Perry and Attorney General Greg Abbott, has been at the forefront of the 10th Amendment movement seeking to reign in the federal government’s repeated attempts to micromanage, manhandle and mismanage almost every aspect of the citizens’ personal and professional lives.     

“The Texas Attorney General’s office ‘will pursue every available legal remedy’ to prevent the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from implementing the new Cross-State Air Pollution rule in the state, office spokeswoman Lauren Bean said,” according to the Fort Worth Star Telegram.

The new rules are designed as a regulatory end run around the states and Congress in order to implement policies that neither the states nor the Congress will approve. Even with a substantial liberal majority in Congress in 2010, Blue Dog Democrats and red-blooded Republicans managed to beat back attempts to impose similar policies under so-called cap-and-trade legislation.

But Obama rarely cares much for the approval of Congress. Once Congress stopped acting as a ways and means committee for him, the president started pursuing a policy of enacting legislation- or scuttling it- by regulatory action, nuisance lawsuits and prosecutorial discretion.

The EPA has re-written rules regarding emissions under the guise of health risks posed by fossil fuels. Power plants have gone from the regulatory requirement of using the “best available” emissions technology to being required to install the “most advanced” emissions technology.

Consequently many older coal fired plants will likely be shuttered because they won’t be able to afford the most advanced emissions technology. And for those power plants that already meet emissions standards, the EPA is using vague air quality rules to shut down the more advanced coal fired plants.      

Last month the Texas AG’s office announced that it would be suing the EPA over permitting rules rejected by the EPA that will prevent the construction of large industrial plants. The announcement was accompanied by blistering criticism of the EPA by Governor Rick Perry, who has since entered the presidential race.   


John Ransom

John Ransom is the Finance Editor for Townhall Finance.
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