Plastic Pollution

Trump Campaign Attacks Kamala Harris for Wanting To Ban Plastic Straws

Both Harris and the Trump campaign agree that plastic straws are a superior product. Only Harris wants to ban them.


The Trump campaign is continuing its attempt to paint Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.) as a dangerous left-wing radical in the wake of her selection as Joe Biden's running mate. The latest angle of attack: her support for plastic straw bans.

This morning, the campaign tweeted out a short new attack ad featuring footage of Harris saying that we should ban plastic straws in response to a question from CNN's Erin Burnett at a 2019 town hall on climate issues.

The short clip also features Biden saying at an earlier campaign event "I don't think we should be using plastic straws anymore" in restaurants, although it's unclear from the full clip of the former vice president's remarks whether he endorses full prohibition.

San Francisco, where Harris was district attorney, is the largest city in the U.S. to ban plastic straws. Indeed, it has one of the most sweeping straw ordinances on the books. The city bans plastic straws, as well as other single-use items like stirrer sticks and cocktail swords, from being given out for free or being sold in grocery stores.

President Donald Trump and his campaign have been avidly pro-plastic straw ever since they became a political issue.

"I do think we have bigger problems," said Trump when asked about whether we should ban plastic straws in July 2019. "It's interesting about plastic straws. You have a little straw, but what about the plates, the wrappers & everything else that are much bigger and made of the same material?"

His campaign also sells Trump-branded plastic straws, claiming that "liberal paper straws don't work."

The inferior quality of paper straws is actually a rare point of bipartisan agreement between the Trump and Biden/Harris camps. In her extended remarks at CNN's town hall, Harris candidly acknowledged that the replacements for plastic straws did not work all that well, noting that "if you don't gulp it down immediately it starts to bend and then, you know, the little thing catches it."

The 2020 presidential race doesn't give libertarians much to be hopeful for. On the issue of plastic straws, at least, there is no equivalence between the two parties.

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  1. Interesting setup… but where’s the analysis?

    Are we against straw bans like popular opinion? Do we have a reason?

    Is this a valid line of attack? Does it reveal something about the nature of the candidate and her (their) views on the use of state power?

    Does the libertarian party have a position on this topic? What about the LP candidate (who’s views seem to keep widely diverging from her party’s views)?

    1. Straw bans are horrible because they are using violence to compel people to be idiotic about inconsequential things.

      It’s almost a pure expression of assholery.

      1. The movement to ban straws is the perfect representation of leftist idiocy.

        1. If you are a Progressive, then you take the greatest pleasure in making people do trivial but very visible things for no compelling reason. Hence, the ban on plastic straws, which account for a tiny amount of the plastic in the oceans, and almost none of which comes from the US anyway. Ditto the ban on plastic bags. Of course now you are required to use the plastic bags because of Covid, but will be forbidden again by next year.
          It doesn’t really matter if masks help prevent Covid transmission – they are visible sign of compliance with a Progressive mandate.

          1. I quit working at shoprite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new…DFr after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier.

            Here’s what I do………► Cash Mony System

    2. I remember when Reason employed journalists and had a libertarian slant.

      1. 2006 was a good year

  2. How about a candidate for president who doesn’t want to use police powers to remake society in their own warped image. Nope.

    So take the least worst and that is not Joe-Blow 2020.

    1. Joe-Blow 2020

      Not bad.

  3. Apparently these are my choices in November:
    (1) a party that wants to ban straws, and
    (2) a party that opposes Charles Koch’s open borders agenda.

    As a Koch / Reason left-libertarian, this isn’t a difficult decision.


    1. But then how will Charles Koch ingest his soup? He’s gonna need someone to spoon-feed it to him. Oh. I see your end game.

      1. “He’s gonna need someone to spoon-feed it to him.”

        Exactly. Why do you think he demands a constant influx of labor — especially from Mexico?


  4. Interesting. I wonder what Harris thinks of the straw man concocted by the FBI with assistance from nefarious foreign underworld types to undermine a presidential transition and throw the country into chaos and division for almost 4 years

    1. Well, you are gonna keep wondering…. because ain’t nobody with a press pass asking Biden or Harris about that.

      1. Is it too much to ask of Reason for them to, you know, maybe mention it? Cover it at least as much as Cardi B vs Ben Shapiro or Q Anon or plastic straws?

    2. Speaking of which… it has been years now.

      Where are the interviews with Steele? Where are the interviews with his primary source, the guy we now know was not only not “close to Putin” as he was described, but was actually just some guy with a US think tank who had the appropriate surname?

      Where are the interviews with Clapper, Brennan, Comey, Rice, Obama, Biden, etc. that go into detail on why they subverted the US government the way they did?

      Nobody in the press is even a little bit curious as to how this sort of thing developed in the Obama administration? I mean, if they were willing to do it during an election campaign, and willing to even attempt to use a hoax to bring down a president, what were they also willing to do that we never learned about?

      Surely there are junior folk who were in the room at the time and know things. Surely this is out there in the wind. Where is the press? Where are the curious reporters who ply the staff of Nadler and Schiff with drinks to get them to talk about the secret dealings to overthrow a president?

      This is all “make your career” level stuff.

      1. Shh…shhh… let’s just let bygones be bygones.

      2. there’s a Pulitzer Prize just waiting for someone to connect the dots and pick it up. but then no one would hire them ever again.

      3. Comey was issued a subpoena I believe.

  5. I would never say Harris like to suck on ‘straws’ to get ahead.

    1. “head” — you said get “head” — hee hee her her hee he

    2. I’ll give her this much: she keeps herself in good shape. Fucking her way up the ladder of success must have been easy as hell.

      I wonder if she and Block Yomomma have ever gotten it on. Any man who could resist after spending all those years looking at a far-assed ugly pig like Michelle Robinson every day is a saint in his personal life!

  6. It is almost as if Trunp is trying to appeal to the average consumer.

    What is the science behind these straw bans?

    1. Greta Thunberg is sad about it (as much as she can be, anyway), and you want to talk science???

        1. The 21st century’s Carrie Nation.

    2. The “data” on which the straw shit is based is shit some elementary school student came up with for a science project. I believe it’s based on the assumption that every straw sold in the US ends up in the ocean, which is clearly absurd. I think the claim was that a billion staws end up in the ocean every year.

  7. There’s plenty to attack Harris on. Start slow, and build up as the election approaches.

  8. Trump Campaign Attacks Kamala Harris for Wanting To Ban Plastic Straws
    Republicans pounce!

    “The Trump campaign is continuing its attempt to paint Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.) as a dangerous left-wing radical”
    Maybe because she is a dangerous left-wing radical with a penchant for authoritarianism as evinced in her DA career?

    “The latest angle of attack: her support for plastic straw bans”
    This was originally intended as a think piece for Huffpo or Buzzfeed, huh.

  9. >>”if you don’t gulp it down immediately it starts to bend and then, you know, the little thing catches it.”


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  11. The media went after Trump for eating steak well done with ketchup. This, by comparison, seems like a legitimate gripe.

    1. Note that the media mentioned the well done steak not Hillary Clinton. I must say that Trump appear to be clutching straws to find something on Senator Harris. He might want to try a different approach and actual do and act like he is the President.

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