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Reason Foundation

Hillary, Obama, McCain should cool down on global warming

Shikha Dalmia
March 19, 2008, 7:37am

According to a poll just released by the National Center for Public Policy Research, 48% of Americans aren't willing to spend even a single penny more in gasoline taxes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Seventy-six percent aren't willing to spend as much as 50 cents. Opposition to higher gas taxes to curb greenhouse gas emissions is particularly strong among minorities, with 53% of blacks opposing any increase in the gas tax and 84% saying they wouldn't be willing to go as high as 50 cents. What's more 78% of Democrats, 80% of Independents, and 85% of Republicans aged 55 and above wouldn't be willing to pay as much as 50 cents more in gas taxes -- even though that would translate, on average, only to about $300 per year -- less than a dollar a day. This poses a huge political dilemma for the current slate of presidential candidates, all of whom have promised big action on global warming: If they recant after they get elected, they will enrage the enviros and risk being branded as planet destroyers, much like the current administration. If they impose a tax, they can expect a huge voter backlash. The lesson here for politicians is: Think with a cool head before emitting hot air. To look at the press release and the full study, click here: http://www.nationalcenter.org/PR-Global_Warming_Gas_Tax_Poll_0308.html

Shikha Dalmia is Senior Analyst


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