Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Gene Green: still scared of progressives

Every time I start to like ol' Gene, he screws it up:

Representatives from a number of Houston organizations held a press conference and rally near Congressman Gene Green's east Houston office, after being prevented from doing so on the property where his office is located.

The group at the press conference today included religious, community, educational, and labor leaders, teachers and students, environmentalists, scientists, health professionals, and small business owners. ...

Following the event, one of the attendees tried to deliver a letter to Rep. Green's office stating her concerns, but was prevented from even going up to the office by the building security guard.

The group had tried to meet with Green or his chief of staff on March 2, when Green was in town, but he told the group something had come up and he had to leave town the morning of the meeting, and a substitute meeting with his chief of staff was canceled because that person was not available either.

Before the press conference yesterday, Bill Crosier and Ron Hayden went up to Green's office on the 4th floor at 11811 East Freeway to let his staff know they were here and invite them to attend, but found the door locked. Rep. Green had been previously invited to join the group at the press conference. A note on the door said the office was closed today because the staff was at a senior activity.

Crosier and Hayden were met by a security guard who asked if they were there for the "protest". They replied they were there for a press conference, not a protest, and hoped representatives of Rep. Green's office would be in attendance because his constituents wanted him to know how they felt about impending climate change legislation. They asked if the press conference could be held in the atrium of the building and were told no. They then asked if it could be held outside the building on the east or west sides, and were told no. The guard said the building management had been contacted by Green's office and the management said they could not hold the press conference anywhere on the property, not even on the parking lot.

Once outside, the guard and Officer Joseph C. Cram, with the Criminal Intelligence Division of the Houston Police Department, both told the group that they could not hold the press conference or any event anywhere on the property. Other police also arrived, apparently concerned about the event as well.

The group then moved to the parking lot of an adjacent property.

Good ol' boy Gene is on the House Energy and Commerce committee (chaired by Henry Waxman of California). The committee is holding hearings regarding climate change legislation under consideration by Congress.

So you would think ol' Gene might be interested in some input from some of his constituents. Well, he is, it's just that he thinks his only constituents are five refineries and "more chemical plants than (he) can count":

"I’d like to vote for a bill,” Green said. “But I’m not going to vote for one unless I think it’s going to be good for the area I represent.”...

Green has told congressional leaders and President Barack Obama that some carbon dioxide emission allowances will have to be given for free to refiners in order to win his support.

Green has become the main lawmaker pushing for free allowances for refiners, as one of just four Democrats on the Energy and Commerce Committee representing states with big refining operations. The others are Rep. Charlie Melancon, D-La., Charlie Gonzalez, D-Texas, and Jim Matheson, D-Utah.

Maybe we should let ol' Gene know that there are some concerned citizens who have to breathe the air that comes out of his district.

Ol' Gene is just one of those old-timers who's a little bit scared of "libruls". It's a mild, moderate case of fear and loathing, the kind you see more often in acute and chronic conservatism.

Maybe a dose of contested primary could cure that.

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