Oh, And The Climate Change Bill Is Doomed, Too
With the health care bill stalling, the climate change bill, already passed by the House, has been delayed again by the Senate.
U.S. Senate Democrats announced on Monday a new delay on climate change legislation, which could make it more difficult for President Barack Obama to win progress on that front before a global environmental summit in December.
Already facing a tough fight in the Senate and dwindling time before the summit to pass a bill, Democrats said they would not be able to unveil their legislation until "later in September."
Initially, the plan was to introduce a Senate bill to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases blamed for global warming by around late July -- a timetable that had already slipped to early September before the latest delay.
Just as the delays in the health care bill allowed conservatives to organize, delaying the climate bill will give industry the jump. Most of them cannot be bought off the way the White House clumsily attempted in the health care debate. Duke Energy, one of the few companies willing to deal on climate legislation, admitted as much to the National Journal, saying that "influential member companies ... would never support climate legislation no matter what." And so we're already seeing the same kind of anti-climate change astroturf events, and the response from enviros has been weak, so put it mildly.
Meanwhile, those Republicans with designs on getting elected again are never going to join any kind of climate legislation. The so-called moderates are already falling away.
Gov. Crist Nixes Joining RGGI or Pursuing State Emission Curbs; Will Defer to Feds
Tallahassee - Florida Governor Charlie Crist has decided that his state will not join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) or pursue further major efforts to combat climate change, according to a notice released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). Florida, once a leader among states in addressing climate issues, instead will sit on the sidelines and await the outcome of federal cap-and-trade legislation.
Rather than issue a public announcement, Florida's decision was communicated to other Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic state members of RGGI that the Sunshine State would not participate in the upcoming September 9, 2009 auction of greenhouse gas emission allowances. In addition, Gov. Crist "will not be presenting a proposed cap-and-trade rule to the 2010 Legislature," stated the notice quoting Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) spokeswoman Amy Graham.
Remember that Crist's sock-puppet, George LeMieux, got installed into the US Senate. So much for a gettable Republican vote from Florida.
If health care goes down, forget about this bill seeing the light of day. The move is actually to take it up before the health care bill gets going, to forestall the expected delay. But I see no indication that the Senate has anywhere near the votes to pass anything worth a damn. And reconciliation instructions were never given on this bill, making it not an option.