Gov. Mitch Daniels had the task of delivering the Republican response to President Barack Obama's weekly national radio address. He chose to tackle Obama's "cap and trade" energy policy and its potentially negative economic impact. Here's the full text of his response:
"This is Mitch Daniels, governor of Indiana.
"The role of the loyal opposition is important in our democracy. It imposes a duty to wish for the nation's success, to express not just disagreements, but agreements where they exist, and to leave partisanship at the water's edge.
"I do wish President Obama well. I support his education reform ideas, anti-fraud
initiative in social programs, and the great example he and his family are setting for families across America. And I endorse wholeheartedly his stated commitment to 'government that works.'
"One policy being pushed by the President and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is, I regret to say, a poster child for government that cannot work. The scheme to radically change the sources and the cost of American energy through a system known as 'cap and trade' may be well intentioned, but it will cost us dearly in jobs and income, and it stands no chance of achieving its objective of a cooler earth.
"The national energy tax imposed by Speaker Pelosi's climate change bill would double electric bills here in Indiana, working a severe hardship on low-income families, but that's only where the damage starts. In a state where we like to make things, like steel and autos and RVs, it would cost us countless jobs, many of them heading off-shore to China and India. Our farmers and livestock producers would see their costs skyrocket. And our coal miners would be looking for new work, while we leave affordable, homegrown energy idle in the ground.
"And all for what? Even if one believes the Administration's own computer models, which they claim can predict temperatures fifty years away, the CO2 reductions from their bill will not budge the world thermometer by a tenth of a degree.
"It's become clear that the Pelosi bill has little to do with a cooler planet and everything to do with raising money for the out-of-control federal spending now underway in Washington. Please excuse us Midwesterners for feeling a bit like the targets of an imperialistic policy, devised in places like California, New York, and Massachusetts for their benefit, at our expense.
"We have here a classic example of unwise government: The costs for all Americans will be certain, huge, and immediate. Any benefits are extremely uncertain, miniscule, and decades distant. Surely there is a better way.
"Here in Indiana, we are active in pursuing a better energy future and proving that we can protect the environment, lower energy costs, and create jobs at the same time - all without raising taxes. We have rocketed to national leadership in biofuels. We are the nation's leader in the new technology that can use coal more cleanly. We are serious about major advances in conservation; the best way to reduce both pollution and CO2 is to use less energy in the first place. And last year, we were the fastest growing state in wind power.
"There is tremendous risk in being pushed into an unfair and ultimately counterproductive national energy tax that will cost us dollars today and jobs tomorrow. Let's take a breath, slow down, and work together on conservation, the infrastructure to bring on more wind and alternative energy, and the new technology that will let us use our abundant homegrown coal in ways we can all support. That, Mr. President, would be 'government that works.'
"Thank you for listening."