June 19, 2014
Good afternoon -
The Senate Majority has provided a perfect case study to completely undermine Senator Jeanne Shaheen's claim that she is pro-American energy development while still supporting and empowering Harry Reid. It turns out that both statements cannot be true.
Roll Call reported that, "Late Wednesday, the Appropriations Committee decided not to move forward as scheduled with Thursday’s markup of the bill that funds the Energy Department, as well as water development projects. The move avoids a potentially problematic vote for Senate Democrats and the Obama administration that could have stopped the Environmental Protection Agency’s bid to regulate carbon emissions from existing power plants — regulations that have the affect of targeting pollution from coal." In other words, Democrats yesterday delayed the hearing to avoid being forced to vote on an amendment to protect Granite Staters from electricity price hikes and job losses caused by the new EPA regulations. Why? Because Harry Reid runs the Senate thanks to Jeanne Shaheen.
“Jeanne Shaheen’s mere presence in the Senate allows Barack Obama and Harry Reid to execute an extreme, anti-energy agenda that hurts New Hampshire,” said NRSC Press Secretary Brook Hougesen. “Jeanne Shaheen cannot be both pro-energy development and pro-Harry Reid; one claim undermines the other. Shaheen's failure to fight against these harmful EPA regulations proves that instead of fighting to help New Hampshire, Shaheen again has prioritized the liberal Obama agenda."
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT SHAHEEN'S/DEMOCRATS' PRO-ENERGY AMENDMENT DODGE
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: "Apparently fearing that the top Senate Republican might score a political win, Democrats for the second time in a week cancelled a preliminary vote on a major spending bill. At issue was an amendment by Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell that would have allowed the Kentucky Republican and Appropriations panel member to successfully go to bat for his state's coal industry as the spending panel was to consider on Thursday a measure funding the Energy Department and other agencies." (AP, "Senate Democrats scuttle a vote on spending bill," 06/18/14)
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: "McConnell's amendment appeared on track to prevail. It is aimed at blocking any new government rules on carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. He's made his opposition to what he calls the Obama administration's "war on coal" a centerpiece in his own re-election bid. Mikulski's decision to call off the vote on the underlying energy and water appropriations measure came a week after she cancelled debate on a huge measure that would also have forced endangered Democrats to vote on politically poisonous amendments regarding the implementation of President Barack Obama's health care law." (AP, "Senate Democrats scuttle a vote on spending bill," 06/18/14)
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: "More interesting was the decision to block a panel vote on McConnell's pro-coal amendment. The Appropriations panel is stocked with Democratic red state supporters of the energy industry like Sens. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Mark Begich of Alaska, both of whom face difficult elections this fall." (AP, "Senate Democrats scuttle a vote on spending bill," 06/18/14)
ROLL CALL: Headline: "Democrats Ducking Vote on ‘War on Coal’ Amendment — for Now." (Roll Call, "Democrats Ducking Vote on ‘War on Coal’ Amendment — for Now," 06/18/14)
ROLL CALL: "The war over the “war on coal” has been postponed after Democrats pushed off a second fiscal 2015 spending bill in the Senate... The move avoids a potentially problematic vote for Senate Democrats and the Obama administration that could have stopped the Environmental Protection Agency’s bid to regulate carbon emissions from existing power plants — regulations that have the affect of targeting pollution from coal. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., crafted an amendment on the subject that he intended to offer to the Energy-Water appropriations bill. As noted previously, the breakdown of Democratic caucus members on the committee is such that he would have had a real chance to prevail." (Roll Call, "Democrats Ducking Vote on ‘War on Coal’ Amendment — for Now," 06/18/14)
THE HILL: "Senate Democrats canceled a scheduled Thursday Appropriations Committee markup that could have opened the door to an amendment to block the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest climate rules...The amendment was part of an effort against what Republicans are calling Obama’s “war on coal.” (The Hill, "Senate Dems cancel spending bill vote amid GOP threat on EPA rules," 06/19/14)
E&E NEWS: "The Senate Appropriations Committee last night suddenly abandoned plans to advance a $34 billion energy and water spending bill this morning. Republicans had been plotting to use the markup to force tough votes on controversial issues including the Obama administration's climate change and clean water regulations. The cancelation was announced around 8 p.m. last night, and an Appropriations Committee aide offered no explanation for the deviation." (E&E News, "Amid escalating political tension, Senate panel drops energy, water bill from markup agenda," 6/19/14)
@AriNatter: Senate Dems postpone planned Energy and Water Approps bill markup...comes as McConnell planned amendment to block EPA CO2 regs.
@DarrenGoode: Top Senate Approps Republican Richard Shelby criticizes delay of energy-water spending bill. "Regular order means ... taking tough votes."
@Ben_Geman: 1/2 The white-hot politics of the EPA climate and Clean Water Act rules are singeing the appropriations process in the Senate. #EPA
@Ben_Geman: 2/2 Energy & Water approps markup canceled in face of GOP amendments that would tempt conservative Dems, Qs remain on minibus floor amdts