The federal government is at it again, telling us Virginians how to go about saving energy, money, and the environment. At least, that’s what Prince William County Republican Bob Marshall is saying.
Del. Marshall has introduced a bill (HB 66) in the VA General Assembly that would permit the manufacture and sale of incandescent light bulbs within the commonwealth after new federal energy standards go into effect. Because incandescent light bulbs are so inefficient relative to other bulbs in the market, the former would basically be taken off the market by lack of consumer demand. Isn’t that what markets are supposed to do Del. Marshall?
This bill by Marshall comes as one of many anti-federal government bills being pushed by the wing-nut conservative House of Delegates who see the federal government as interfering with Virginia’s choices, choices in the case of Marshall’s bill to add unnecessary energy demands and expenses onto the taxpayers of Virginia.
Marshall has justified his bill as not only a 10th Amendment issue but also as a safety issue. According to Marshall, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) contain high levels of mercury. But if Marshall were so concerned with safety issues, then why has he been in favor of lifting the ban on uranium mining in Virginia?
Of course, Marshall, like many of his ultra-conservative friends, don’t frame issues important to them in terms of “safety.” These individuals care about two things: making as much money as possible, whatever the costs, and shrinking the size of government down to what they perceive as the most desirable level to protect individual liberty, whatever that means to them.
It shouldn’t be about politics when it comes to safety. For the Republican Party of Virginia, it is. Unfortunately for Virginias, what this equates to is a far less safe state to live and raise a family in.