Following is the text of the Weekly Republican Radio Address.
Hello, this is Representative Beth O’Connor of Berwick. Recent Republican radio addresses, have focused on the economy, onerous new taxes, unfunded mandates, burdensome regulations, anti-business attitudes, debt, and the state budget. Clearly, there are differences between the political parties in these areas over how to improve Maine.
This week, my address will focus on an area where we should,
and did agree – UNANIMOUSLY. No more ethanol in our gasoline!
My bill, LD 822 – An Act To Prohibit the Sale of Motor Fuel
Containing More than 10% Ethanol was passed unanimously out of the Environment
& Natural Resources Committee and unanimously in the Maine House and
When the bill got to Governor Mills’ desk, SHE VETOED IT!
Before I get to that, let me remind listeners why ethanol is
bad and why the bill passed unanimously in the HOUSE and SENATE.
According to the Environmental Working Group:
Ethanol-Gasoline Fuel Blends May Cause Human Health Risks and Engine Issues
Emissions from higher ethanol fuels may worsen health risks from air pollution.
Distribution of higher ethanol fuel blends may pose new safety risks and higher fuel costs.
According to the American Petroleum Institute:
Ethanol has 33% less energy than gasoline meaning it gets fewer miles per gallon. Consumers have spent more on higher ethanol content fuels because they have to fill up more often to go the same miles according to AAA.
The Clean Air Task Force found that corn ethanol’s net greenhouse gas emissions are “28% higher than emissions that would result from the use of regular gasoline.”
According to the Friends of the Earth:
“The effort to replace gasoline with ethanol is misguided and dangerous.”
More air pollutants (e.g. nitrous oxide and formaldehyde);
Drinking water contamination;
Increasing food price volatility;
Increasing the global hunger rate
It causes Environmental Damage through:
Waterway pollution from chemical runoff;
It Costs consumers by:
Damaging older cars and trucks, and small and off-road engines;
Voiding engine warranties
The Natural Resource Defense Council says that “even the EPA knows it threatens the air we breathe.”
According to Consumer Reports Gas with ethanol can make
small engines fail:
“Ethanol has inherent properties that can cause
corrosion of metal parts, including carburetors, degradation of plastic and
rubber components, harder starting, and reduced engine life,” says Marv
Klowak, global vice president of research and development for Briggs &
Stratton, the largest manufacturer of small engines. “The higher the
ethanol content, the more acute the effects.”
Don’t you wonder why Maine’s environmental lobby and press
ignored these issues?
FOLLOW THE MONEY
Governor Mills vetoed the bill, despite the health,
environmental, small engine and fuel economy concerns of Mainers.
It is my understanding that the Legal Counsel for the Maine
Democratic Party was hired by one of the select few companies in Maine with
tanks capable of selling E-15. E-15 can be sold for cheap, giving that company
a competitive advantage over other gas stations, especially small mom and pop
Since when do the concerns of one company override our
lungs, our environment and need for fuel-efficient vehicles that don’t seize up
from watered down gas?
We’ve had 5 months of puffball news stories about how
Governor Mills is making climate change a top priority.
LD 822 was a concrete, unanimous, specific, proposal to
protect the environment now, not decades down the road.
The wants of the few triumphed over the health,
environmental and consumer concerns of the rest of us.
Even worse, 50 House Democrats changed their vote on the
Veto override vote, so that it failed by 4 votes!
The Governor’s staff and lobbyists for the corn-ethanol
lobby were working the halls to switch votes.
I DIDN’T HEAR ANYTHING ABOUT THIS IN THE NEWS, DID YOU?
Did the environmental lobby or the media alert the public to
this consumer health and environmental threat?
Remember when Paul LePage was Governor. The media spent all
its time and energy fixated on every perceived, real, or manufactured
flaw. Not so with Janet Mills and
This is why you need to pay attention to what one-party rule
in Augusta, and de facto state-run media, means for you and Maine. Bad
legislation that is sugar coated, and like ethanol, harmful to Maine.
Countless people have told me that this not what they wanted
when they voted for Janet Mills and Democrats last fall. They didn’t sign up
for new home heating fuel taxes, new taxes on beer and wine, or to pay for
abortions that the federal government won’t pay for. They didn’t vote to give
up their First and Second Amendment rights under the Constitution.
They also weren’t in favor of higher property taxes, or a
government that is planning on spending 99.995% of available taxpayer funds to
fund an unsustainable 11Plus % increase in the state budget that is
unsustainable going forward.
Get involved, if you aren’t already, and try to dissuade
those in power from doing more damage to our environment, economy and our
In the meantime, find out how your Rep. voted, Call them to
thank them, or admonish them.
This has been State Representative Beth O’Connor with the Weekly Republican Radio Address.
Thank you for listening.
Rep. Beth O’Connor is serving her fourth, non-consecutive term representing Berwick and part of North Berwick.