Despite the recent bipartisan support garnered from some Republican senators, progress on the Senate climate bill has been stalled by a group of others led by Sen. James Inhofe. Inhofe is the Senate's most vocal climate change denier, and he's convinced other GOP Senators to throw a wrench into the climate proceedings--by simply refusing to show up and cast a vote in committee. According to Think Progress,
Senate Republicans have endorsed Sen. Jim Inhofe's (R-OK) plan to boycott the legislative markup of the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act (S. 1733) . . . Inhofe's GOP compatriots on the environment committee hope to block action by refusing to participate in the markup on the pretext that the Enviromental Protection Agency's economic analysis of the bill is not "complete."Which is a barely veiled way of saying they don't like the analysis the EPA came up with--as the analysis of the bill has been completed--perhaps because the EPA found that the bill would only cost US households $10 a month. Which of course is hundreds of dollars less than the GOP leadership continues to claim the bill would cost (even though they've been disproved numerous times).
And so, when the markup started today, the GOP senators were nowhere to be found.
The smart money says Inhofe and co. are simply trying to stall the proceedings to ensure no Senate vote is cast before Copenhagen--COP15 being a strong incentive for voting in favor of passing climate legislation. After all, the GOP leadership has never accepted any analysis done by the EPA on either the House or Senate climate bill--so why would they accept it now?
Joe Romm over at Climate Progress says Boxer (coauthor of the bill) should give them their "complete" analysis:
My recommendation is to give in to GOP delaying tactics, while continuing to point out how absurd they are . . . Boxer should have the EPA do a "complete analysis" before the mark up -- and then watch as the GOP hypocritically denounce the conclusions of it anyway.
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