Thursday, December 18, 2014

Partisan showdown ahead on Senate Energy Committee?

"The ideological divide over climate change widened this week in the Senate committee charged with shaping America's energy policy, setting the stage for a partisan showdown over the new Republican majority's plans to attack the Environmental Protection Agency, build the Keystone XL pipeline and drive fossil fuel expansion."

Elizabeth Warren is one of three new Democrats on the panel
InsideClimate News' Katherine Bagley reports that the Democrats' replacement of three pro-fossil-fuel lawmakers with more pro-climate-action senators means that "any across-the-aisle cooperation on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is probably dead."

"While Republicans will control the panel 12-10 in 2015, Democrats could delay—or even potentially derail—the GOP's pro-fossil-fuels agenda by nitpicking bills during committee mark-up or by threatening a presidential veto."

"The GOP's appointments are evidence of the increasing desire within the party to roll back Environmental Protection Agency regulations," said Ford O'Connell, a Republican strategist who served as an adviser on the 2008 McCain-Palin presidential campaign. "The Democrats' decisions were definitely calculated, defensive choices. They chose three of their strongest environmentalists...There will be some serious battles in the next two years."

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