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Brooks blasts TVA over rolling blackouts

U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) has criticized the Tennessee Valley Authority for the rolling blackouts the federal utility conducted over the weekend.

In announcing the rolling blackouts Saturday, TVA said it was due to “unprecedented demand,” caused by the unusually cold temperatures. The interruptions were ended later in the day.

The low in Huntsville last Friday night was 3 degrees.

Brooks joined WVNN “The Yaffee Program” Wednesday and criticized the TVA for failing to be prepared for the storm.

“The cold streak that we’ve had over the last week, that’s happened before,” Brooks said. “So we’ve had those kind of demands on our electricity supply, people trying to heat their homes, keep their pipes from bursting and everything else.

“The TVA should have been prepared for it.”

The congressman this was not something that was out of the TVA’s control.

“You know when there’s a natural disaster like when he had the tornadoes blowing through about a decade ago and the lines were down, there’s not anything the TVA or anybody else can do about that,” he said. “But heat waves, cold freezing weather, those are the kind of things that happen.”

Brooks said the utility’s statement on the blackouts sounded “Orwellian.”

“I just rolled my eyes,” he said, “because if I recall correctly, and I’m going to paraphrase, but the quote was from the TVA, ‘We have to have rolling blackouts in order to ensure reliable electricity delivery.’ I’m going, ‘Wait a second, The very definition of unreliability is when you cut it off’ … I just rolled my eyes, it was George Orwellian.”

The lawmaker said this is just another example of a government run enterprise not being as capable as a company in the private sector.

“They’re not as capable as the private sector because the private sector is risking its own money,” he said. “You’ve got people who could go bankrupt if they’re not good at what they do. The federal government, all they do is increase taxes, or they cut off delivery, or they raise rates, depending on what the government service may be.

“So they are much less apt to dot the i’s, cross the t’s, use good judgement than the private sector is, and that’s one of the reason the private sector has worked so well and socialism has not.”

Brooks also blasted the TVA and the federal government over the unfinished Bellefonte Nuclear Power Plant, calling it the “worst federal boondoggle in history.”

The TVA released the demand numbers Wednesday and said “Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we managed record-setting power demand over the weekend.”

Yaffee is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts “The Yaffee Program” weekdays 9-11 a.m. on WVNN. You can follow him on Twitter @Yaffee

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