Tom Kacich: Area legislators' constituents heavily government-employed

There's a very good reason that many downstate Republican — and Democratic — lawmakers have not embraced the more drastic pension fix proposed by House Speaker Michael Madigan. And Rob Paral, a Chicagoan who admits to "a lot of nerdy number-crunching" is able to show why.

Many of their constituents are government employees, who would lose much more under Madigan's reform plan than one offered by Senate President John Cullerton.

In fact, using federal census data, Paral shows that some of the greatest blocs of government employees live in central and southern Illinois.

In fact, state Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, D-Urbana, and state Sen. Mike Frerichs, D-Champaign, represent the districts with the highest percentages of government workers in the state.

Thirty-seven percent of Jakobsson's constituents (more than 10 percentage points greater than the No. 2 finisher) and 28.5 percent of Frerichs' constituents are government workers. That includes not only University of Illinois and state employees, but federal, county and school district employees.

Statewide, the average legislative district has 12.9 percent government employees, said Paral, who owns a firm that provides demographic, social and economic information to clients.

"People don't recognize how important government is as an employer. It's big. A lot of people work for government," Paral said.

But it's exceptionally big not just in Jakobsson's and Frerichs' districts, but in many others in East Central Illinois.

Sen. Dale Righter's district around Charleston-Mattoon ranks 11th of 59 with 15.3 percent government employees. Republican Sens. Bill Brady of Bloomington and Chapin Rose of Mahomet each have 15.2 percent government employees, good enough for 14th and 15th places. Sen. Jason Barickman ranks 21st with 14.5 percent government employees.

Among state House districts in the area, Catlin Republican Rep. Chad Hays' district ranks ninth at 19 percent, Rep. Brad Halbrook's district ranks 13th, Rep. Dan Brady's is 21st, Rep. Adam Brown's west Champaign district is 27th (at 15.5 percent) and Rep. Bill Mitchell's is 35th (at 14.9 percent).

The legislative districts with the smallest percentages of public sector workers are in Chicago and its west and northwest suburbs. There, public sector employees make up as little as 7.1 percent of all employment.

Danville prison

A report last week by state Auditor General Bill Holland found few problems at the Danville Correctional Center, the 28-year-old high medium security prison on Danville's east side.

But it did show that the prison was among the most crowded in the state on June 30, 2012.

And a more recent report, done by the Department of Corrections and dated May 31, was even more troubling. It showed that the Danville prison was at 217 percent of its design-rated capacity of 896 inmates, the capacity of the facility when it was constructed. As of May 31, according to DOC, there were 1,942 inmates at Danville.

DOC said the prison's operational capacity was 1,966 although at other points — including the Danville prison's own website — it said the capacity was 1,866.

DOC spokesman Tom Shaer said the population at the Danville prison on Tuesday was 1,835, a figure it has been at or below for the last month.

"We are crowded but not overcrowded," Shaer wrote in an email.

Around May 31, he said, the Danville center was housing inmates in a gymnasium, as were other correctional centers. That practice has ended at Danville, Shaer said.

In any case, he stressed, the prison is safe.

"We have a safe and secure facility and the incident reports show that," he wrote.

The auditor general's report said there were four inmate assaults on staff in both fiscal years 2012 and 2011, a sum lower than almost all other DOC medium security prisons.

The report also showed that there were 212 correctional officers at the prison on June 30, 2012, and that there were more than 39,000 hours of either overtime or compensatory time paid out in that fiscal year.

In terms of yearly cost per inmate, Danville was one of the prison system's most efficient facilities with an annual cost per inmate of $16,368. The lowest was the Big Muddy (also high medium security) prison at $15,572. Highest was the now-closed Tamms "supermax" prison at $66,965 per inmate. Second was the Southwestern Illinois Correctional Center, a minimum security prison, at $38,854.

Anti-Davis TV ads

The League Of Conservation Voters has begun running what it calls "accountability ads" in the Champaign-Decatur-Springfield and St. Louis TV markets that are critical of U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, for his position on climate change.

"The American people are tired of Washington politicians like Rep. Davis ignoring basic scientific facts and standing in the way of action on climate change," said Gene Karpinski, president of the group.

But at least part of the TV spot — a very brief snippet taken from a Davis interview on WILL radio last October — is taken out of context and appears to be deliberately misleading.

In the brief, edited cut Davis says, "global warming has stopped 16 years ago."

But in the actual passage, available at WILL's website (http://will.illinois.edu/focus/program/talk-to-the-candidate-rodney-davis-r-13th-illinois-congressional-district), Davis says in response to a question: "Ironically if you listen to recent reports they're saying that global warming has stopped 16 years ago."

After he was interrupted by the caller, Davis continued, "I would love to see more stats than what has just been reported on a couple stations. But climate change is real. The debate is over whether or not it's manmade or natural, and what can we do about it."

For the record, though, Davis is opposed to "cap and trade" legislation and carbon taxes that are supported by the League of Conservation Voters.

In a statement Tuesday, Davis spokesman Andrew Flach acknowledged that opposition.

"Congressman Davis will continue to oppose efforts to enact a job-killing tax on carbon emissions and will work to reverse the administration's efforts to end the use of coal-fired power plants that provide almost half of Illinois' electricity and support 31,000 jobs in the state," Flach said.

He called the League "nothing more than a far-left front group for the Washington Democrats at this point."

Tom Kacich is a News-Gazette editor and columnist. His column appears on Wednesdays and Sundays. He can be reached at 351-5221 or at tkacich@news-gazette.com.

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Sid Saltfork wrote on August 14, 2013 at 11:08 am

When the state employees, and retirees have their pensions stolen; their communities suffer economically from the loss of incomes.  Odd that a newspaper in a large state employee, and retiree community continually harps for the theft of earned pensions in it's community?  The ones crying for "pension reform" (theft) are the business, and corporate members who will benefit from the theft.

The employees paid their pension payments; but their employer, the State of Illinois, did not pay it's legally required pension payments.  The money was used for corporate tax breaks, and pork barrel projects that brought in "campaign donations" (bribes).  Illinois suffers from two problems: corruption, and spending.  Corruption which brings about spending in exchange for "campaign donations".

Illinois has options to honor debts, and the state constitution.  However, it means ending the corruption that both parties have engaged in over the past decades.  Does the population of the state have the intellectual ability, and the guts to stop the corruption?

Political Observer wrote on August 14, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Here's the link to Rob Paral's blog that Tom Kacich "forgot" to give you, Sid:


http://robparal.blogspot.com/2013/08/government-workers-in-illinois.html


It has separate tables of data for House and Senate districts that give the percentage of government employees in each district.  There's also a figure that you can use your mouse on, to see the percentage of government employees in the Senate districts.

 

Political Observer wrote on August 14, 2013 at 8:08 pm

I'm not sure how informative this dataset is, though.  Kacich notes in his article that Paral's "percentage of government employees" in each district  "includes not only University of Illinois and state employees, but federal, county and school district employees" as well...but then after noting that important fact, he goes on and seems to completely ignore its significance.


So, the question should be asked, "Why should federal government employees care what happens to state employee pensions?"  (In fact, it's often pointed out in discussions of pension issues that judges who'll rule on pension cutbacks don't belong to the same pension plan that other state workers belong to...and legislators don't generally talk about making any cutbacks in judges' pensions.)  So Rob Paral's data set might not really be all that informative, if there are different balances of the types of government employees in different districts, and many employees in other pension systems don't really care what happens to state pensions...

Political Observer wrote on August 14, 2013 at 10:08 pm

Actually, the really, really bizarre part of this Tom Kacich column is when Tom pins on his Rodney Davis button in the latter part of the column, and appears to act as a volunteer spokesman for the Davis Campaign.


We saw in the 2012 Gill-Davis Campaign that Mr. Kacich seems to like defending Rodney Davis from truthful statements made by critics of Davis' oddball positions and past record, and that appears to be exactly what he's trying to do here.  Kacich writes in his column above:

--------------------------------

The League Of Conservation Voters has begun running what it calls "accountability ads" in the Champaign-Decatur-Springfield and St. Louis TV markets that are critical of U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, for his position on climate change.

"The American people are tired of Washington politicians like Rep. Davis ignoring basic scientific facts and standing in the way of action on climate change," said Gene Karpinski, president of the group.

But at least part of the TV spot — a very brief snippet taken from a Davis interview on WILL radio last October — is taken out of context and appears to be deliberately misleading.
--------------------------------

However, there's really nothing at all that's "deliberately misleading" about this commercial.  If you actually listen to the WILL-Radio interview in question, here's what you'll hear, as I wrote in the News-Gazette forum last October:


-----------------------------
At 42:15 minutes into the interview, a listener named Bob asked Davis about his views on the question of global climate change.   Davis responded at 42:51 by first laughing about the question, and then made the bizarre claim, “Ironically, if you listen to recent reports, they say that global warming has stopped 16 years ago!”

In this initial statement, Davis was reaching out to his base of global climate change deniers – those who get their science from Rush Limbaugh and similar sources and who reject the global consensus of atmospheric scientists – and was telling them “I’m one of you.  I don’t believe these foolish claims of global climate change for a minute!”

(Let me parenthetically note here that I believe that Davis actually meant to say “14 years ago,” because for some time, many climate change deniers have been claiming that global warming stopped in 1998.)

In any event, when the questioner Bob heard Davis’ bizarre claim about global warming having stopped 16 years ago, he immediately interrupted him and said, “That’s absolutely wrong!”  There was then a brief back and forth where each individual tried to talk over the other.  When this stopped, Davis said that what he had wanted to add before he was interrupted was, “I would love to see more stats than what has been reported on just several stations.” [He’s apparently saying that only several stations have so far covered this “new finding” that global warming stopped 16 years ago!]  Davis then immediately transitioned into a statement (at 44:25 minutes in) that was a standard talking point that he has obviously been instructed to say when the subject of global climate change comes up, “I believe climate change is real – the question is whether it’s man-made or natural.”

One could call this sequence of pivots (or some would say flip-flops), “Covering all the bases.”  Davis first said what he believes and what his base wants to hear from him.  Then, when he was immediately challenged on it, he said that he wished there had been more media coverage of the hoax that he apparently fell for.  Finally, he ended up saying his poll-tested statement that was designed to get him off the hook, and to make it look like he didn’t really mean what he said at first.  In that last part, he was telling us that the mask that we just saw slip off, didn’t really slip off, and we didn’t really see what we thought we saw.

This may seem like rather dishonest, two-faced behavior, but it was topped less than a minute later in the WILL interview (at 45:15) when Davis started complaining about how the Peabody Mine #10 in Kincaid, IL, near his hometown of Taylorville, was closed down in the 1990s, all because of some burdensome government regulations that were put out by the EPA.  He said that there was an electrical power plant located in Kincaid, and for years coal was simply mined in the mine across the street from the power plant and then shipped across the street, to supply the fuel for the plant.  However, when the EPA came out with some new rules and regulations in 1990, the coal across the street could no longer be used in the power plant.  This caused the Peabody Mine #10 to be shut down, and that in turn caused many miners to lose their jobs.  Ultimately, the coal for the power plant had to be shipped to Kincaid from way out west, by a train, and so we’re apparently supposed to take this as an example of how ridiculous government regulations can be.

The problem with Rodney’s sad story, though, is that he “forgot” to tell us that the Kincaid plant was mining high-sulphur coal, and the train that was now bringing in coal from out west was bringing in low-sulphur coal to burn in the power plant.  He also neglected to say that the supposedly-terrible federal regulations he was attacking were part of the Clean Air Amendments of 1990, which were designed to lower sulphur dioxide exhaust emissions from Midwest power plants that were causing acid rain in the NE United States and in Canada, and that were also causing respiratory problems for people who had asthma.  Once one realizes that Rodney Davis is actually coming out and saying that he’s in favor of increasing the levels of acidity in acid rain, it seems to me that the whole argument that he’s trying to make just kind of loses its point.

The thing is, though, that Rodney’s argument in this interview in favor of having higher levels of acidity in acid rain is an argument that John Shimkus has been making in Congress for a long, long time.  There are, indeed, many videos available of Shimkus making this argument…He has a large group photo of some coal miners and he holds it up in the air for his audience to see, as he talks about the 1200 miners at Peabody Mine #10 that lost their jobs, just because of some supposedly-silly Government Regulations [that actually help to give us a much better environment to live in].

[This excerpt, and much more on the Shimkus-Davis bizarre beliefs about climate change can be found at this link:

http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2012-10-01/2012-election-candidat...

Political Observer wrote on August 14, 2013 at 11:08 pm

Here's another blogger's perspective on the same WILL-radio interview:

http://www.thereisaway.us/2012/11/rodney-davis-makes-wacky-claim-that.html

"Rodney Davis makes wacky claim that climate change stopped 16 years ago"

Political Observer wrote on August 14, 2013 at 11:08 pm

This same blog has another interesting post, about the answer that Davis gave when the State Journal-Review asked him in October, 2012 if he accepts the scientific consensus behind climate change:

http://www.thereisaway.us/2012/10/rodney-davis-denies-science-behind.html

"Rodney Davis denies science behind climate change. Would kill green jobs in Illinois."

Political Observer wrote on August 15, 2013 at 12:08 am

Now, if you'd like to see the actual advertisement that Tom Kacich claims has a section that's "deliberately misleading," there's a YouTube video of it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlUX4bTWSzY&feature=youtu.be

Representative Rodney Davis "Sixteen Years Ago" Ad

Political Observer wrote on August 15, 2013 at 12:08 am

What's more, here's a shot-list of the commercial, with the shots in the left-hand column, the narrator's voice-over text in the middle column, and the supporting evidence for the claims that the commercial makes in the right-hand column:

http://www.lcv.org/media/davis-sixteen-years-ago-ad.pdf

Rodney Davis – “Sixteen Years Ago”   8/7/13

Political Observer wrote on August 15, 2013 at 12:08 am

And finally, here's how the League of Conservation Voters described their commercial about Davis:

http://www.lcv.org/media/press-releases/LCV-Launches-Major-TV-Ad-Buy-Cri...

 

 

Political Observer wrote on August 15, 2013 at 1:08 am

Bernie Schoenburg in today's State-Journal Register ran a similar item on the League of Conservation Voters' commercial about Davis, even including the weird quote by Davis' spokesflack, where Flach called the League "nothing more than a far-left front group for the Washington Democrats at this point."

However, instead of giving Davis' spokesflack the last word like Kacich did, Bernie gave the spokesman for the League of Conservation Voters, Jeff Gohringer, the opportunity to reply to Flach:

------------------------------

Gohringer called the idea that the officially nonpartisan organization is a party front a “laughable assertion.”

“He’s trying to divert attention from his views on climate, because he knows he is not only on the wrong side of science, but also his own constituents,” Gohringer said, adding that “NASA and 97 percent of scientists agree that human activity is contributing to climate change, and to suggest otherwise is the classic language that we see from climate deniers.”

-----------------------------

Read more:

http://www.sj-r.com/schoenburg/x369948404/Bernard-Schoenburg-Rauner-Brad...

bluegrass wrote on August 16, 2013 at 10:08 am

Let's say I witness a conversation between Bob and Joe from afar.  Later, I ask Joe about the content of that conversation, and Joe says, "Well, Bob just asked me if I beat my wife and kid every day."  Is it not deliberately deceiving to quote Joe as saying, "...I beat my wife and kid every day."?  

Regardless of what you think of Davis or climate change, the facts are the quote was taken out of context to make a point, and the words are misrepresented.  You apparently don't like Rodney Davis, but that doesn't mean we should look the other way when individuals or groups are deliberately misusing quotes to lie about people, politician or not.  It's the exact same thing as when those idiots ran the commercial that misused a quote from one of Illinois' newest members of the public dole, David Gill, making it sound as if he wanted to end Medicare.  Both are lies.

Political Observer wrote on August 16, 2013 at 4:08 pm

Thank you very much for your very entertaining and interesting story about Joe, Bob and yourself,  Bluegrass!  But suppose there were a fourth person present, Wittgenstein, who pointed out to you that:


 (1)  Since it's obviously the case that all quotations of a person's conversations about their beliefs are taken out of context to some extent (at least, to the extent that no one ever quotes everything someone has ever said or felt about some topic),


 (2)   Therefore the real question ultimately has to do with whether the person's beliefs have been misrepresented or not.

 
In other words, suppose Wittgenstein said that a person who whines about someone's words being taken out of context needs to follow up their whine with a demonstration of how the person's beliefs have been misrepresented.  That's the real crux of the issue!


Has Tom Kacich given us any evidence that Rodney Davis' beliefs on climate change have been misrepresented?  If so, in what way?  What does Rodney Davis believe about climate change,  and how does that differ from the way his beliefs have been characterized in the commercial?

bluegrass wrote on August 16, 2013 at 8:08 pm

So, by your logic, since everything anyone ever says could be taken out of context, it's okay to take a part of what someone says here or there, and manipulate it to make it sound like whatever it is you believe is the "crux of the issue."

Forgive me if I disagree.  Even if I try to follow your flawed logic to it's end, you would have us all believe that Rodney Davis said he believes global warming ended 16 years ago, when even in the articles you posted, Davis is quoted as saying he believes climate change is a reality.  You don't like Rodney Davis, and you don't want the truth to come out, so you go along with it.  All the rest of your questions are simply you trying to justify the lies and deceit.  More of the same.  

Let me quote Political Observer, if I may.  Isn't it true, that according to what you just wrote, you believe that, "Tom Kacich is very entertaining and interesting.  Tom Kacich pointed out that the real crux of the issue is that Rodney Davis' beliefs on climate change have not been misrepresented.  Since it's obviously the case that Rodney Davis whines about everthing, Tom Kacich has given us evidence that Davis has a pointed, commercial context in all his beliefs."     

 

Political Observer wrote on August 18, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Wow! That's quite a comedy routine you have there, Mr. Bluegrass! 

[Aside:  Who could have possibly guessed where low reading comprehension abilities, faulty assumptions and cascaded logic (along with a seriously-out-of-tune banjo) could lead, in a short-form comedy sketch?!!!  We ought to take this bit on the road!]

Political Observer wrote on August 18, 2013 at 5:08 pm

In the post to which you were responding, Mr. Bluegrass, I specifically numbered a couple of sentences (1) and (2) to try to make my argument a little bit easier for readers to follow.  (But perhaps I should have put sentence (2) in giant bold letters, and had arrows pointing to the beginning and the end of the sentence!)

 
I fail to see how you got from me saying that:


"(2) Therefore the real question ultimately has to do with whether the person's beliefs have been misrepresented or not."


to making your argument that I apparently don't care about misreprenting peoples' beliefs.  But, hey, it's all just a bunch of word salads, isn't it?

Anyway, I've already given my view of what Rodney Davis was trying to say to the caller named Bob in his WILL radio interview, in my earlier post above, at 10:08 pm on 8-14-13.  It would be interesting if someone who wanted to defend Mr. Davis could actually make a coherent explanation of what they thought Davis was trying to say in response to Bob's question...but maybe that's expecting too much from Rodney Davis Country.

Political Observer wrote on August 18, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Here's something that's kind of funny.  It seems like Rodney Davis can't give an interview without making some really screwed-up statements.  This is from last Friday's News-Gazette:

------------------------

http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2013-08-16/davis-harold-attend-st...

Asked whether the government had any role in cutting carbon emissions, Davis said, "The government should be concerned about putting Americans back to work, and growing our economy. And right now there's an attack on coal in this country by this administration, and through the rules and regulations coming out of the EPA. I'm going to fight against that.


"And that's why the League of Conservation Voters, which has an agenda to put forth a cap-and-trade system that will be a job killer, they don't want me in Congress. They want their fairy godmother, (former House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi, back in charge."

---------------------------


Has Rodney Davis ever been able to make it through an interview without attacking Nancy Pelosi?  Maybe one of these days after he starts calling her the "fairy godmother" of the League of Conservation Voters again, she'll just start beating the bejeezus out of poor L'il Rodney, until he has to call in his fairy godfather, John Shimkus, to help him out!

Political Observer wrote on August 18, 2013 at 8:08 pm

In this same interview, Davis also said:

----------------------------

"I'm not for cap-and-trade. I'm never going to be for cap-and-trade. I'm for making sure that America continues to reduce its carbon footprint, which we already have. We're doing that through the marketplace.

----------------------------

Maybe somebody should take L'il Rodney aside and slowly and patiently explain to him that the "cap-and-trade" system doesn't have anything to do with taking off his baseball cap and trading it to someone else in his Congressional rotisserie baseball league!  Rather, it's the marketplace-based system that's been used for a long time to deal with emissions, including the problem with acid rain (that L'il Rodney still apparently needs to be educated about):

http://www.epa.gov/airmarkets/progsregs/arp/s02.html

"The significant environmental progress and cost savings resulting from the Acid Rain Program’s nationwide experiment in capping and trading SO2 emissions have attracted worldwide attention. This 2002 brochure explains how and why this system works, clears up some common misunderstandings, and presents the outlook for future programs based on this model."

bluegrass wrote on August 19, 2013 at 8:08 am

If you like cap and trade so much, why don't you marry it?

If you cannot at least agree that it is not okay to take a quote from someone, and make it sound as if it has completely another meaning that fits your own narrative, then really what is the point of reasonable conversation?  Let us simply engage in passive agressive name calling and 4th grade comebacks.  

You can write about low reading comprehension post all the links to various websites all you like, but in the end you're still defending a dishonest television advertisement.  

 

Political Observer wrote on August 19, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Mr. Bluegrass said, "If you like cap and trade so much, why don't you marry it?"


[Aside, for the benefit of anyone else who may still be following this exchange:

Heh-heh-heh!  This sounds like something Rodney Davis or John Shimkus would say, doesn't it?!  Is it possible that  Flach the Spokesflack has been "coaching" Mr. Bluegrass on WWSS (= "What Would Shimkus Say?")?!! Or perhaps the joke comes right out of the "How to Grow Up to Be Just Like Rush LImbaugh Training Manual!" from the chapter on "How to Tell a Joke to a Liberal!" ...Because, you see, what really makes this joke funny is when the person who writes it doesn't realize that cap and trade is a conservative, market-based idea that was introduced back in the day when there were still Republicans who cared about the environment! 

Mr. Bluegrass, like his heroes Shimkus and Davis, apparently doesn't do websearches or click on links, perhaps  because he seems to think he already knows everything there is to know, but for those who want to see how the package labeled "ACME" just blew up, just a little before Wile E. Coyote could deliver it to the Roadrunner, try pasting a phrase like [cap and trade conservative idea] in your search engine, or check out a link like this one:


http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/Presence-of-Mind-Blue-Sky-T...


Beep! Beep! Whoosh! "Ka-BLAM!"]

bluegrass wrote on August 19, 2013 at 10:08 pm

Since you will not at least cede the point that it is dishonest to misuse a quote to advance a narrative, nor do you see the point of the "why don't you marry it" comment, I must admit defeat.  May I say, however, that you REALLY went off the rails when your misguided conclusion took you to a land where Shimkus or Davis are my heroes.  Perhaps it's the land of Looney Tunes.  I just can't argue with that kind of logic.

Bulldogmojo wrote on August 20, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Um well...Yes there is a giant public University in Champaign county...PUBLIC, PUBLIC, PUBLIC, PUBLIC

I repeated that for Jakobsson's benefit since that sacred cow doesn't seem to be cognizant of that fact and can't be seen to involve herself in PUBLIC pension dialogue

Now get back to your adding machines and figure out how to remedy the pension system having $100 billion in arrearages and state tax revenues of $21.2 billion

http://tax.illinois.gov/Publications/AnnualReport/Annual-Report-2012-Table-1.pdf  

 

Political Observer wrote on August 21, 2013 at 12:08 am

Here's something that's mildly amusing.  Rich Miller's Capitol Fax blog has a short item about the LCV commercial that was made about Rodney Davis' wacko beliefs on the global climate change issue:

http://capitolfax.com/2013/08/20/13th-district-roundup-2/#comments


Now, even though Miller was far kinder to Rodney Davis in the 2012 election than he was to his opponent, David Gill, his reaction to the comments Davis made in the WILL radio debate is spot-on:


"Sounds like he’s trying to have it both ways."

That's exactly the point I made earlier in this discussion forum.  Davis chose to bring up the claim (1)  “Global warming has stopped 16 years ago” and he specifically stated that he would (2) Love to see more stats than what has been reported on just several stations,” before he flip-flopped to his standard (3) “I believe climate change is real – the question is whether it’s man-made or natural.”  He was trying to cover all his bases, or as Miller says, "Have it both ways."

The defenders of Davis, like Tom Kacich in his article above, Mr. Bluegrass in his comments here, or Flach the SpokesFlack tend to point to Comment (3) and say, "Well, see that's what Davis really believes, because that's what he says he really believes!  You can't say that he really believes Comment (1) because that's logically contradictory with Comment (3); he just mentioned that to say that there are people out there saying that!  So ignore Comments (1) and (2), just focus on Comment (3) and...HOLY COW!...Poor L'il Rodney is being dishonestly characterized and this is definitely the Scandal of the Millenium!"

Well, since the people who are claiming Comment (1) is a true statement aren't climate scientists who are publishing in peer-reviewed scientific journals, L'il Rodney has apparently fallen for a scam once again, and here he is on the radio giving a shout-out to the bad claims he fell for, and definitely wanting us to know that this information is out there!  (The fact that in Comment (2) he wants to see more evidence favoring the truth of the scam, just makes his latest gaffe all the more embarrassing for him.)

In fact, a good argument can be made that this commercial, far from "misrepresenting the beliefs of Rodney Davis" actually doesn't go far enough in showing how far out of the mainstream Davis is when it comes to his bizarre beliefs about Environmental and Climate Science.  But that's a topic for another post.