The threatened Green Elephant may soon be found only in protected reserves in remote areas of the northeastern United States. The 2006 election, of course, saw the loss of Senator Lincoln Chafee (R.I.), a longtime environmental hero. Now today's Hartford Courant
says that Representative Chris Shays (R-Conn.) is threatening not to run in 2008--unless House GOP leaders support his bid to be minority chair of the House Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee.
I'm 61 years old. I've been in Congress 20 years. If I have to fight to become chairman of a committee, given the job I've done, I need to move on.
Shays is among the last Republicans in increasingly Democratic New England, and among the top environmentalists, with a 91 percent lifetime score from the League of Conservation Voters. Should he carry through on his threat, the question arises: Is the environment doomed to become a partisan issue?