House Votes Down Light Bulb Efficiency Standard

Tea Partiers declare a victory for personal liberty

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The House of Representatives voted Friday to spike a federal regulation that would take most of those less-efficient-but-more-flatteringly-yellowish light bulbs off the market next year. Even lighting manufacturers are against rolling back the rules, The Wall Street Journal's Ryan Tracy reports, because they've already invested in making more efficient bulbs. But conservatives say they don't want the federal government deciding how people can light their houses, even though the standard was passed in 2007, supported by many Republicans, and signed by then-President Bush.

The amendment was attached to an energy bill that passed 219 to 196, with 10 Democrats voting yea. Tate explains that though the more efficient bulbs are more expensive, consumers make up the difference in lower electric bills after about six months. The last factory that made 100 watt bulbs closed in 2010, The Guardian's Suzanne Goldenberg reports. But Tea Partiers like Michele Bachmann viewed the law "as an assault on individual liberty and an affront to the memory of the lightbulb inventor, Thomas Edison."
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