Monday, May 4, 2009

Democrats duel over climate bill

"And that's how a bill becomes a law"

Going solar?
Image lifted from Solarfeeds.

From Politico:
President Barack Obama’s ambitious first-year agenda has some House Democrats fearing a repeat of 1994, when the priorities of a new president collided headfirst with the prerogatives of senior leaders on Capitol Hill and the party lost control of both the House and the Senate.

While few leaders would predict a similar collapse at this early stage in his presidency, those fears provided the backdrop for a leadership meeting Thursday in the speaker's Capitol conference room, people present said.

In the run-up to the meeting, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) argued in several newspaper interviews that the House should move cautiously on a cap-and-trade bill if it doesn’t look like the Senate will approve it. Van Hollen doesn’t want vulnerable House Democrats — especially the freshmen under his care — to be forced to take difficult votes on the measure if it’s not going to pass anyway.

But Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, a 34-year veteran of the House who knocked off his longtime predecessor last fall to push an ambitious climate change bill, took umbrage with Van Hollen’s public stance during Thursday’s leadership meeting, people present said.

Brandishing an issue of that day’s CQ in which Van Hollen laid out the merits of holding off, an agitated Waxman reminded his junior colleague that raising procedural concerns in public didn’t make it any easier for the Energy and Commerce Committee chairman to broker a compromise with the members of his committee — or help him pass an ambitious bill in the House....MORE
We had Rep. Van Hollen's comments last Tuesday in:
"(DCCC Chairman) Van Hollen: "Climate bill could wait "'