For three decades, firm opposition to any sort of nuclear development for Yucca Mountain has been a rite of passage for any candidate seeking national political office representing Nevada.
But the past few congressional races, Republicans have been bending that rule.
Mark Amodei, candidate for Nevada’s 2nd Congressional District seat, told the editorial board of the Las Vegas Sun on Monday that he would be happy to keep funding the development of the Yucca Mountain project through the Energy Department, with the hope of turning it into a bastion of nuclear research and reprocessing.
“I don’t celebrate every time somebody says it’s funded at zero,” Amodei said. “I support Joe Heck’s efforts. I think there are opportunities to do things out there.”
What he's talking about is Joe Heck's amendment that would have allowed for nuclear reprocessing at Yucca Mountain. They think this is a "win-win" for them in that they can tell us they "don't support Yucca" while giving Republican Congressional leadership "local cover" to continue pushing to open Yucca. They know GOP leadership won't accept anything less than turning Yucca into a nuclear waste dump. And since there isn't enough water in southern Nye County to allow for reprocessing, Heck's proposal simply isn't feasible to begin with.
So really, what Heck and Amodei are doing is nothing more than kabuki theater being put on to allow House Republicans to go forward in dumping tons of nuclear waste across the country here in Nevada and driving it right through Las Vegas. As The Sun noted earlier this month, this is all about the nuclear power industry's demand for more nuclear power plants to be built in America.
Developing Yucca Mountain in any way that involves nuclear power is extremely dangerous... And potentially illegal as well!
With the sole exception of Joe Heck, Nevada's other 3 members of Congress oppose any sort of nuclear development at Yucca. They know just how dangerous this would be for Nevada, as well as for other parts of the country that would be part of the route to Yucca.
So why do Mark Amodei and Joe Heck insist on keeping Yucca Mountain on track to open? Do they really care that little about their own state that they seek to "represent" in Congress?