Let America Lead Grades New CEI Report

CEI “Myth vs. Fact” Document Earns D- For Being “Sloppy and Misleading”

Earlier this week, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) published a Webmemo on the Kigali Amendment that claims to correct the record but only serves to mislead and further confuse the facts. Let America Lead reviewed the new CEI document. Since CEI holds itself out to be an educational institute that publishes scholarly papers, we figured they wouldn’t mind if we graded their paper. CEI’s work is riddled with errors and earned a D-. You can see our graded paper here.

It’s important to note that CEI not only got a lot wrong, but it conveniently disregarded many relevant facts. While we didn’t dispute every single contention CEI made (we would have run out of red ink), the ease with which we easily refuted the claims only demonstrates how weak the whole of the claims are.

CEI saved the most glaring misrepresentation in its report for last. Here is the claim:

Myth: The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol is [sic] bipartisan measure.

Fact: The Kigali Amendment is strictly a product of the Obama administration that deviates from the Montreal Protocol’s stated purpose.

This claim is an insult to the many conservatives who are proudly supporting the Kigali Amendment’s ratification. Let America Lead is proud to feature several of their voices on our website. It also ignores the fact, widely reported on at the time, that a group of 13 Republican Senators signed a letter in June asking the President to send the Kigali Amendment to the Senate for its advice and consent. Portraying the Kigali Amendment as lacking bipartisan support is either ignorant or downright dishonest. But either way, it is factually wrong.

Other assertions that CEI made that are false and misleading include:
• CEI claims that only a few refrigerant makers stand to gain from Kigali implementation, yet the entire HVACR industry is unanimous in its support for Kigali ratification. 
• CEI’s claims about consumer impact are not supported with evidence, yet are treated as accepted facts to support other misleading claims.
• CEI attempts to dismiss an economic impact study that predicted that Kigali ratification would lead to the creation of as many as 33,000 more direct HVACR jobs and add $12.5 billion in direct output to our economy because it is “industry funded.” Is CEI’s position that any industry funding automatically invalidates the underlying research? A more reasonable position for a free market think tank to take would be that no one has a better vantage point to determine what the impact of a public policy action will be on a particular industry than the people who run the businesses within it.