Then They Came For Our Light Bulbs

Don't worry, America. Even though we're four weeks away from suffering another potential financial crisis, congress is tackling the issues that really matter such as repealing lighting efficiency standards which save roughly $12 billion dollars per year in electricity costs and are overwhelmingly supported by companies that make light bulbs

In a move that could be called anything but conservative, Republican lawmakers are set to bring a bill to the House floor next week that will repeal state and municipal rights to set efficiency standards for light bulbs. The bill would unravel a piece of federal legislation that was strongly supported by light bulb manufacturers and has spurred innovation in the lighting industry. [...]

The bill, sponsored by Texas Republican Joe Barton, would strip away any “federal, state or local requirement or standard regarding energy efficient lighting” that uses light bulbs containing mercury. In other words, all compact fluorescent bulbs.

Barton’s bill targets the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which increases the efficiency of incandescent light bulbs by 27% through 2014. It was a completely non-controversial bill that had bi-partisan support, was strongly supported by light bulb manufacturers (and still is) and was signed into law by George W. Bush.

The audacity! Energy efficient light bulbs! We don't need no stinkin' energy efficient light bulbs! That's for socialists!

Wait, this legislation would block states from setting their own efficiency requirements? What happen to states rights?

  • scott finkel

    A light bulb.The symbol for an idea.Understand their outrage.

  • agrazingmoose

    If the Rs keep this up, it won’t matter what light bulbs we use. Only the rich will be able to turn on their lights.

  • muselet

    I read this post and thought I must have missed something, so I went to the linked Think Progress article. I read that and even thought about it for a bit. I didn’t miss anything.

    I can think of only two possible reasons Joe Barton would sponsor this bill:

    1) He’s an ignoramus and wants to prove it/doesn’t care if everyone knows.
    2) He is in receipt of a substantial campaign contribution from an industry that would benefit.

    Personally, I’m willing to dismiss number 1 above as a trivial solution.


    • JMAshby


  • mrbrink

    It’s not an issue until John Boehner cries.

    “When are we gonna stand up and refuse to change our dim bulbs?!” [sniffles]

    “Can you go back to your 2.2 watt constituents and tell them to change their light bulbs?!

    Hell no you can’t!!


    “I’ve been chasing the anti-American dream[sniffles]for light bulbs for kids with families[ooooh] for my[hoooooahhhhhh]Ronald Reagan statue!!!”

    “Waaaaa, waaaaa, waaaaa.”


  • Corebela

    Even for a dumb fuck republican I don’t see how he can explain why he does not like it without lying…. Oh wait that is exactly what happened.

  • IrishGrrrl

    Well, all of the unemployed conservative voters who aren’t being helped by their conservative Congressional Reps and Senators can now rest comfortably knowing they can continue to use their mercury-laden, ineffective light bulbs. Never mind they may not have any money to pay the electric bill to light the bulbs in the first place. By golly, they have their Freedom Bulbs and that’s all that matters!

  • dildenusa

    States rights went down the tubes with efficiency standards. Now, is this the same Joe barton that said the nation should apologize to BP when BP, Transocean, and Halliburton caused the largest offshore oil spill in history? I believe it is.

    • incredulous72

      Yes, that is the same asshole. Those republicans are a conflicted bunch, aren’t they?

      UN . . . REAL.