Doherty v. Whelan on RGGI

TRENTON – Two senators on opposite sides of the aisle spoke on the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) resolution tonight, each predictably adopting the opposing view in a political climate.

Widely assumed to be  a 2012 U.S. Senate candidate courting conservatives in hopes of running against U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), state Sen. Mike Doherty (R-23) of Oxford voiced his opposition to the resolution co-sponsored by state Sen. Bob Smith (D-17) of Piscataway that would keep New Jersey in RGGI.

 “Ocean Spray went to the Lehigh Valley – board members said they went to Pennsylvania because of energy costs,” Doherty said. “Gov. Christie was right.”

The governor last month announced he would pull New Jersey out of RGGI.

Defending the legislation, state Sen. Jim Whelan (D-2) of Atlantic City said China spends ten times more than the United States on alternative energy.

“They are doing things we should be doing – we should pass this resolution,” said Whelan, who’s running for re-election against an energized challenger in Assemblyman Vince Polistina (R-2) of Egg Harbor Twp.

The resolution passed narrowly, 21-18.

Doherty v. Whelan on RGGI