- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 30, 2017

Vermont Sen. Bernard Sanders told CNN Thursday that President Trump’s plan to prioritize job creation over climate change regulations is “stupid and dangerous.”

The commander in chief signed an “Energy Independence” executive order Tuesday as a means of rolling back former President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan. Mr. Trump said his policies will cause “wealth to pour into our communities,” although Mr. Sanders frames it as a recipe for environmental disaster.

“[This plan is a] nonsensical, and stupid, and dangerous approach,” Mr. Sanders told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Thursday. “It’s almost indescribable. Look, the scientific community is virtually unanimous. While Trump and his friends think climate change is a hoax, what the scientists are telling us it is real, it is caused by human activity. It is already causing devastating problems.”

The Trump administration argues on the White House website that its actions will prevent $39 billion in electricity hikes, allow 242 million tons of coal to benefit the American economy, and disbands the Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases.

“I am taking historic steps to lift restrictions on American energy, to reverse government intrusion and to cancel job-killing regulations,” Mr. Trump said Tuesday while surrounded by coal industry executives.

Kentucky Coal Association President Tyler White cheered the move soon afterward.

“I cannot tell you how many jobs the executive order is going to create, but I can tell you that it provides confidence in this administration’s commitment to the coal industry,” Mr. White told Reuters.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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