Highlights, lowlights and strategy in the Kerry-Lieberman-Graham climate bill
The Edison Electric Institute -- whose members generate the bulk of the nation's electricity -- and two of its influential CEOs, Exelon's John Rowe and Duke Energy's Jim Rogers, will declare their support Monday, sources said. Although Kerry did not name the three oil companies, a source familiar with the negotiations said Shell, BP and ConocoPhillips would back the climate measure.
Winning over business interests who face regulation by the Environmental Protection Agency, Graham said Thursday, is essential to enlisting Republican support for the proposal. "The goal is to have the business community come forward and say, 'This is a better solution to the EPA,' " he said.
This all seems a bit sketchy. If the point is reducing the use of fossil fuels, then any bill that's acceptable to people who build their chateaus using profits from selling fossil fuels is probably a pretty weak bill. But it's hard to believe our political system is capable of a good bill right now, so maybe some kind of a start is about the best we can do. And we're at least seeing an important political dynamic clarified: It seems clear that the quality of the bill is entirely dependent on the credibility of the EPA's threat to take autonomous action. So it may be time to double down on that.
Photo credit: Scott J. Ferrell/Congressional Quarterly.
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