James Inhofe

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James Mountain Inhofe or Jim Inhofe is a Republican Senator from Oklahoma.

Inhofe was born in Des Moines, Iowa, grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, served in the U.S. Army from 1955 to 1956 (or maybe it was from 1957 to 1958?) and became President of Quaker Life Insurance Company before being elected to the the Oklahoma House of Representatives, serving from 1967 to 1969, and being elected to the Oklahoma Senate, serving from 1969 to 1977, the last four years as Republican minority leader. In 1978, he was elected Mayor of Tulsa, a position he held until 1984. Then in 1986, Inhofe ran sucessfully for Congress in the First District (in what became a safe republican district), serving from 1987 to 1994. When Senator Boren retired, Inhofe won the Republican nomination for the special election in November 1994, winning as part of the Republican tide that saw the party win both houses of Congress. He was reelected in 1996, 2002, and 2008.

Contents

Wing-Nut

Inhofe is one of the most conservative members of either house of Congress; among other political stances, he strongly opposes abortion and is a critic of gay rights. As a member of the Armed Services Committee, he was among the panelists questioning witnesses about the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib. There he made news by claiming he was "outraged by the outrage" over the revelations of abuse, suggesting that shock at the crimes was more offensive than the crimes themselves. He also criticized the Red Cross as a "bleeding heart." Against the wishes of the Bush administration, the Pentagon, and the American Petroleum Institute, Inhofe has persistently blocked American ratification of the international Convention on the Law of the Sea, claiming that the treaty would infringe on American sovereignty.

Loves a Man in Uniform

On May 15, 2006 he issued a press release about the use of National Guardsmen to police the southern border: "I reluctantly support this short-term use of our guardsmen given the unguarded state of our borders and President Bush’s assurance that this is a temporary measure. I will use my position on the Senate Armed Services Committee to ensure that this mission does not last more than one year."


Iraq

In Inhofe's view, the Iraq War is going splendidly, it's "a huge success story". In his eyes, peace is just around the corner .[1]

In May 2004, at a Senate hearing on the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib, Inhofe said that he was "more outraged by the outrage than ... by the treatment." Dismissing the claimed severity of the abuse, he asserted "that I would guess that these prisoners wake up every morning thanking Allah that Saddam Hussein is not in charge of these prisons".[2] According to Inhofe, "What we might consider abusive treatment, they might think they've died and gone to heaven".[3]

Theocrat

Senator Inhofe is a leading proponent of dominionism, a theocratic form of evangelicalism which believes Christians are compelled to bring all societies under Christian rule. In a speech on the floor of the United States Senate, Inhofe argued that America should base its Israel policy entirely upon the text of the Bible:

I believe very strongly that we ought to support Israel; that it has a right to the land. This is the most important reason: Because God said so. As I said a minute ago, look it up in the book of Genesis. It is right up there on the desk. In Genesis 13:14-17, the Bible says: "The Lord said to Abram, "Lift up now your eyes, and look from the place where you are northward, and southward, and eastward and westward: for all the land which you see, to you will I give it, and to your seed forever. . . . Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it to thee." That is God talking." The Bible says that Abram removed his tent and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar before the Lord. Hebron is in the West Bank. It is at this place where God appeared to Abram and said, ``I am giving you this land,--the West Bank. This is not a political battle at all. It is a contest over whether or not the word of God is true.

In March 2002, Inhofe also made a speech before the U.S. Senate which included the explicit suggestion that the 9/11 attacks were a form of divine retribution against the U.S. for failing to defend Israel. In his words: "One of the reasons I believe the spiritual door was opened for an attack against the United States of America is that the policy of our Government has been to ask the Israelis, and demand it with pressure, not to retaliate in a significant way against the terrorist strikes that have been launched against them." [4]

Anti-Working Class

Inhofe outraged federal employees on the day of the Oklahoma City bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Building by stating on National television that there probably weren't very many casualties because federal employees wouldn't be at their desks at 9:00 instead they would be off having coffee somewhere. AFGE (American Federation of Government Employees) responded that maybe that was how Inhofe ran his office.

Crimes Against the Environment

Inhofe is an anti-environmental fanatic, one whose public statements and legislative work on behalf of polluters and Big Oil will have adverse consequences for everyone on Earth. In the 2002 election cycle oil and gas companies contributed more money to Inhofe's campaign than any other congressman except Texas senator John Cornyn [5]. The contributions Inhofe has received from the energy and natural resource sector since taking office have exceeded one million dollars [6]. For those immense contributions and the implicit promise of rewards as lobbyist after leaving office Inhofe has attempted to vilify environmentalists and sceientists working in climate change.

Inhofe claimed that people who were concerned about global warming were like Nazis: "It kind of reminds . . . I could use the Third Reich, the big lie,” Think Progress 7/24/2006

Inhofe claims that "Global warming is 'the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people.'" [7]

Inhofe's views are hostile to the claims of environmentalists. In 2003, he called "catastrophic global warming" a "hoax" and stated that "natural variability, not fossil fuel emissions, is the overwhelming factor influencing climate change" - an assertion allegedly supported by more than 17,000 scientists who are signatories to the Oregon Petition. Inhofe also states that, "satellite data, confirmed by NOAA balloon measurements, confirms that no meaningful warming has occurred over the last century" and claimed that his conclusion was supported by the "painstaking work of the nation's top climate scientists." [8].

Inhofe, claiming uncertainties related to climate science and the adverse impact that mandatory emissions reductions would have on the U.S. economy, voted on June 22, 2005 to reject an amendment to an energy bill that would have forced reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases and created a mandatory emissions trading scheme. "Global warming is still considered to be a theory and has not come close to being sufficiently proven," he said.

In a November 16, 2007 news conference Ihofe claimed that, "The idea that the science (on global warming) is settled is altogether wrong." Hew dismissed the Un Conference on Climate Change as "brainwashing." Deborah Zabarenko. "U.S. Senator Raps UN 'Brainwashing' on Climate." Reuters AlertNet November 16, 2006. News Article

Quotes

  • After a plane carrying Inhofe was shot at by Iraqi insurgents, he denied being frightened and said "I was kind of excited." (Source: Thinkprogress.org, August 31, 2007)

External Links

Religious fanaticism in American foreign policy"

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