Mike Lee feels backlash for his anti-CTBT position

In an excellent editorial on August 11, The Salt Lake Tribune criticizes Mike Lee for his inconsistent and often misinformed position on the CTBT and urged Utah's Senate delegation to support the treaty.

After signing a right-wing petition that included opposition to the treaty, then reconsidering and expressing support for ratification, the candidate for Senate announced last week that he was once again opposed to ratification of the CTBT.

"Clearly, Lee is having difficulty deciding on this issue," the Tribune writes. "That's fine. It's complex. But we would urge him to return to the position he held before he changed his mind the last time. In other words, we would urge him, if elected, to support ratification."

The editorial refutes Lee's contention that the CTBT prohibits use of a nuclear weapon in wartime, but does make the connection that, "One rationale for a test ban is to prevent the proliferation of such weapons to more nations . . . the United States should favor the treaty is because it would lock in the lead in nuclear weapons knowledge that the United States now has. Without testing, other nations would have a hard time catching up."

Reflecting Utah's fervent opposition against nuclear testing, the Tribune concludes that, "We do not believe that Lee's reason for not supporting ratification amounts to a serious objection. Particularly given Utahns' sorry history of downwind exposure to fallout from nuclear testing, Lee should support ratification."