Del. Charles Poindexter, our "representative" in the Virginia General Assembly, was not on the speaker list for Floyd Earth Day festivities Saturday but he showed up anyway and insisted on speaking to the group.

Poindexter never met a photo-op he didn’t like but his speech to the Earth Day festivities was clueless at best. In 44 years of covering politics as a journalist or working inside the system as a political operative I’ve watched elected officials pull a lot of stupid stunts. Poindexter’s appearance Saturday easily tops the list.

The delegate’s comments to the Earth Day crowd at Floyd County High School extolled the virtues of burning fossil fuels and advocated working on controlling CO emissions from such burning rather than looking for alternative fuel sources like ethanol.

Some walked out of the FCHS auditorium during the speech. Others expressed their displeasure at the lunch break that followed his comments.

"Disgusting" seemed to be the most common assessment of Poindexter’s comments. Stronger language cropped up too.

Poindexter wandered around the exhibits alone as most participants avoided him. A few approached and talked. Within earshot, one suggested he was full of an organic material that generates methane.

"I don’t think he picked up any votes here," said Jeff Walker of Floyd.

Now that’s what we call understatement.