11/15/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Debate -- McCain calls Nuclear Safety Advocates "Extreme Environmentalists"

During the debate this evening, it's been pointed out, correctly, that John McCain mocked Barack Obama when Obama spoke about his concern for the "life of the mother" when it comes to abortion laws.

But he made another gaffe (not as bad as when he called Obama "Senator Government"), one which got me thinking and worried me greatly.

McCain accused Obama of taking the position of "extreme environmentalists" because Obama wants to be sure that storing and disposing of used fuel rods from nuclear power plants is done safely.

In fact, in Nevada, which borders McCain's home state of Arizona, there has been a decades-long battle to not allow the disposal of those nuclear rods in that state. With Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) among those "extreme environmentalists," then count me in, too.

What would a President McCain do when it comes to his Secretary of Transportation and the chief of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)? Who would lead them?

Would "extremists" who have dedicated their lives to automotive safety issues be excluded from a McCain administration? Would those with a concern for safety, higher-mileage goals and lowered emissions be considered too "extremist" for a McCain/Palin-led government?

Also just as important is McCain's vision for the Environmental Protection Agency, which was organized beginning in 1970 by President Nixon. The EPA sets the rules when it comes to automotive and truck miles-per-gallon and emissions issues.

Would "extremists" not be hired by these agencies or given positions of importance? There seem to be two McCain "litmus tests" we found out about tonight - A person who thinks the disposal and storage of nuclear fuel rods must be done safely, and those who have a concern for the life of the mother in abortion procedures, would not fit into a McCain/Palin administration.

If John McCain can mock the "life of the woman" and calls those who want safe disposal and storage of spent nuclear fuel "extreme environmentalists," then how could he be trusted with our safety on the roads, the quality of our air and water and the future of our national automotive industry? The short answer: He can't.

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