In an effort to impose costs incurred by progressive States in their efforts to build out their “green” energy infrastructure onto conservatively governed States, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D) is demonstrating his allyship.
Schumer is directing the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to stick red states with the bill.
Mr Schumer last week sent a letter demanding that FERC expedite a “strong transmission planning and cost allocation rule” to deliver more “clean power to Americans.”
Mr Schumer writes that FERC should order states that “act as free riders” to pay for transmission upgrades. He also wants FERC to clarify its “backstop authority” to issue permits when states won’t. In other words, if West Virginians don’t want to pay for connecting New Jersey offshore wind farms to the grid, FERC should mandate that they pay anyway.
Quite apart from whether Schumer’s move is a good or bad idea for our energy industry or economically—it isn’t; it’s a terrible idea—this is a cynical, and I say deliberate, disregard for our Constitution’s separated powers structure for our Federal government.
In our system of governance, legislators, whether as a group or as individual Senators (or Representatives), don’t get to dictate to Executive Branch agencies what they must or must not do. If they want to influence such an agency, or the Executive Branch as a whole, the Congress as a whole must pass a bill that does so and get the President, the head of the Executive Branch, to sign off on it. Alternatively, the Congress as a whole must believe strongly enough in its move to muster a supermajority of legislators in each House to override the President’s veto.
That Schumer chooses to ignore that aspect of our Constitution is all too typical of the Progressive-Democratic Party’s contempt of and disregard for our Constitution.
Us ordinary Americans need to remember this in 16 months.