This doesn’t happen every day: An incumbent member of Congress, in the middle of a re-election battle, says that storing nuclear waste shipments from around the world in her district may be a good idea.

U.S. Rep. Jean Schmidt does say that, and her support for studying the idea has become an issue in her re-election campaign, especially in rural Pike County, in the far eastern end of her sprawling Southern Ohio District, where the nuclear wastes would be stored.

“I’m not advocating for it one way or the other,” Schmidt told The Enquirer. “I’m saying it is something we need to look at.”

Schmidt said she sees potential to create “hundreds, maybe thousands of jobs” in an economically distressed part of the state, where double-digit unemployment rates are the norm. ~The Enquirer

Via The Corner

Now, strange as it may sound, this could be a popular thing to advocate in a poor area of that state.  When the feds were looking to build a nuclear waste facility in southeastern New Mexico, the people who wanted it most were the folks from Carlsbad who expected an economic boost from the facility while the main opposition to it came from people in Albuquerque and Santa Fe who would never have to go within 300 miles of the place.  But southern Ohio, it seems, is not quite like southeastern New Mexico:

“All I can tell you is that when it became known that she supports this, every Jean Schmidt yard sign in the county went down overnight,” said Geoffrey Sea, a writer whose home abuts the Piketon plant. 

There are obvious and perfectly good environmental reasons to object to nuclear waste dumps in any populated part of the country, much less a more heavily populated region.  What can it possibly say for the ideas of the free-trading GOP that its members are reduced to advocating for nuclear waste dumps to replace the perfectly good businesses and factories that have disappeared from Ohio thanks to free trade agreements and offshoring?  I can see Wulsin’s ads now: “Jean Schmidt thinks nuclear waste might be good for your neighbourhood!  Jean Schmidt wants to expose your children to nuclear waste,” etc.  Eight days to Election Day, and this is how she wants to distinguish herself from her opponent?  Yes, globalisation certainly has a bright, glowing future in southern Ohio if Jean Schmidt is re-elected.

Ohioans of the Second District, who among you now wishes you’d voted for Paul Hackett?  You have a chance to correct your earlier mistake.