So Much For Partisan Differences Stopping at the Water’s Edge

As Republican presidential candidates compete with each other as to how rapidly they’d abrogate any Iran nuclear deal if one is reached, Greg Sargent raises another issue on which the GOP will apparently do anything within its power to obstruct or reverse diplomatic commitments made by their country:

If President Obama helps negotiate a global climate accord later this year, one of the crucial contrasts of the 2016 election could turn on a hugely consequential question: Should the U.S. participate in the agreement, or should it withdraw from participation in it?

The GOP nominee may well be on record effectively advocating for the latter.

Here is some more news that underscores this possibility. The Post’s James Hohmann reports:

Some Republican governors who are running for president are threatening to ignore Environmental Protection Agency regulations likely coming this summer that would limit power plant emissions.

Scott Walker of Wisconsin and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana both are mulling whether to ignore the forthcoming EPA rules, which will create targets for reductions in carbon emissions from existing power plans for states to meet and will prompt an epic legal and political battle. John Kasich of Ohio has signed on to a lawsuit against the rules. Chris Christie of New Jersey refused to answer Hohmann’s inquiry. Jeb Bush’s campaign declined to comment on the situation. In the end, whether or not they actively ignore the rules, many of these Republicans will all but certainly oppose them and fight them in court.

So a climate change agreement is extremely likely to join the growing list of international commitments GOP candidates are considering as expendable, international law be damned. So much for partisan differences stopping at the water’s edge, eh?

Beyond that, the sheer number of things a would-be GOP president is expected to promise to rescind, repeal, suspend, ignore, or defy is getting very, very long. It won’t be easy for the eventual nominee to get through this vast list of reactionary commitments and then slide into a smooth rap that my campaign is about the future.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.