Thursday, June 05, 2008

Action On Climate Security Act Bill (S. 3036) Likely Dead

Jun 5: Following a series of arguments, political bickering, procedural maneuvering, and a complete break down in the political process, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has scheduled what will likely be an up or down vote on S. 3036, the Boxer-Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act [See WIMS 6/3/08] for noon on Friday, June 6. Insiders predict it will not be possible to obtain the 60 votes they need to break a Republican filibuster. Apparently, if the vote fails the Democrats will remove the bill from consideration.

On June 5, U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said the Democrat Majority’s had decided to block a fair and open amendment process on what Republicans are now calling the "$6.7 trillion, Boxer Climate Tax bill." Senator McConnell said, "I’m mystified as to why the Democrats decided to block consideration of any and all amendments designed to improve this bill – no consideration of gas prices, no consideration of clean energy technology. A bill with such widespread ramifications merits serious, thoughtful consideration, and a thorough debate. When the Senate considered the Clean Air Act Amendments in 1990, the process took 5 weeks on the floor; 180 amendments were offered, and 131 were ultimately acted upon by the full Senate. As things currently stand, we won’t even spend 5 days on this bill."

Republican sponsor, Senator John Warner (R-VA) essentially confirmed that action on the bill is dead, when he delivered a statement on the Floor saying that he hoped the extensive work that had been done on the S. 3036 would provide a foundation for further action in the next Administration and the next Congress. The other major sponsor, Joe Lieberman (I-CT), praised Senator Warner for his leadership on the issue and said it was disappointing and frustrating that political maneuvering was stopping further consideration of what he called a once in a lifetime opportunity to consider the very real threat of climate change to the economy, environment and national security.

Access legislative details on S. 3036 with links to the Congressional Record and floor debates (
click here). Access a release from Senator McConnell (click here). [*Climate]