Republicans file bill to block EPA from greenhouse gas regulation

posted at 10:55 am on January 7, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

It didn’t take long for House Republicans to start working on one of their biggest goals in 2011.  Yesterday, the first full day of business for the Republican House, almost 50 Republicans and one Democrat added their names to a bill filed by Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) that would block the EPA from issuing any new regulations on greenhouse-gas emissions.  Rep. Dan Boren of Oklahoma may not be the last Democrat in Congress to align himself with this effort, either:

Dozens of Republicans used the opening day of the new Congress on Wednesday to introduce legislation that would bar the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse-gas emissions.

Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, sponsored the bill. The measure’s 46 co-sponsors are all Republicans except for Rep. Dan Boren (D-Okla.). …

The bill would amend the Clean Air Act to declare that greenhouse gases are not subject to the law, according to a brief description in the Congressional Record.

If skeptics think that this move will be strictly symbolic due to the Democratic majority in the Senate, don’t necessarily rush to that conclusion.  Earlier this week, Jay Rockefeller announced his intention to reintroduce a two-year moratorium on EPA enforcement of the CAA in regard to greenhouse gas emissions:

Firing the first salvo in what is expected to be a top energy issue in the new Congress, Sen. John Rockefeller said Wednesday that he’s raring to go in his controversial bid to handcuff the Environmental Protection Agency’s climate regulations for two years.

The West Virginia Democrat told POLITICO that he’ll soon introduce the same piece of legislation he tried unsuccessfully to get a vote on throughout 2010. Rockefeller said he’d wanted to drop the bill at the start of the 112th Congress but was stymied by plans to spend the day debating changes to the Senate rules.

I spoke with Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) last month, perhaps the fiercest critic of the EPA and its attempt to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, who was less than impressed with Rockefeller’s earlier efforts.  Rockefeller had opportunities to join Inhofe and others to put a halt to the EPA’s expansion of authority earlier and failed to act.  Now, however, with the national mood swinging hard against increased regulation in general and perhaps the EPA in particular, it looks as though Rockefeller really feels a need to get ahead of the curve.

Of course, if Congress passes either a moratorium or a complete ban on enforcement, Barack Obama will almost certainly veto it.  If he does, that will show Obama as isolated from the mainstream just when Obama will be trying to position himself once again as a post-partisan moderate for the next election.


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No, from what I’m hearing from those in the real know, is that Zero is going to move to the Right like nobody’s business. His triangulation may well make Bill Clinton blush.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Oh man, every day something good from the GOP.

Skandia Recluse on January 7, 2011 at 11:00 AM

Ed, I’m talking specifically about two sources who can call a number of senators and several dozen congressmen for a lunch meeting the following day and get it.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:00 AM

that would block the EPA from issuing any new regulations on greenhouse-gas emissions.

you do mean naturally occurring human exhaust that trees use to produce oxygen, right?

How many folks have actually been in a greenhouse? Do greenhouses actually emit CO2, nope, they don’t, matter of fact the plants inside use the stuff to make, you guessed it, O2, and then they store the “C” in their cells. I refuse to accept both the premises and the language of leftists in arguments going forward. Hold their heads to the curb and start stomping—CALL THINGS WHAT THEY ARE!

/rantoff, whew. great coffee this am

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:01 AM

His triangulation may well make Bill Clinton blush.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Suppose triangulation actually manages to save Obama’s presidency and he is re-elected in 2012? How soon will it be before he lurches back to the left, knowing he will never have to face another election in his life?

steebo77 on January 7, 2011 at 11:02 AM

I would be watching the news for some totally out of left field announcements from Obama over the next few weeks, if not days.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:02 AM

Of course, if Congress passes either a moratorium or a complete ban on enforcement, Barack Obama will almost certainly veto it. If he does, that will show Obama as isolated from the mainstream just when Obama will be trying to position himself once again as a post-partisan moderate for the next election.

Yeah, like anyone’s gonna believe he’s a moderate after the last 2 years.

Doughboy on January 7, 2011 at 11:03 AM

He has to move boldly to the right or his goose is cooked for 2012.

I had lunch on Tuesday with an old friend who knows these things, and it was confirmed yesterday by another GOP insider.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:06 AM

He is very likely and said to be introducing things that the GOP HAS to come aboard with, no later than State of the Union Address.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:07 AM

How many folks have actually been in a greenhouse? Do greenhouses actually emit CO2, nope, they don’t, matter of fact the plants inside use the stuff to make, you guessed it, O2, and then they store the “C” in their cells. I refuse to accept both the premises and the language of leftists in arguments going forward. Hold their heads to the curb and start stomping—CALL THINGS WHAT THEY ARE!

/rantoff, whew. great coffee this am

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:01 AM

Indeed, Republicans should be calling it the ‘Democrat War on Photosynthesis’.

mudskipper on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

If he does, that will show Obama as isolated from the mainstream just when Obama will be trying to position himself once again as a post-partisan moderate for the next election.

from the mainstream that can actually button their jackets, right/??

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

Yeah, like anyone’s gonna believe he’s a moderate after the last 2 years.

Doughboy on January 7, 2011 at 11:03 AM

Don’t underestimate the American voter. I’d guess that a good 30% would believe it. That is, if you can get them to turn off The View or Orcrah.

TugboatPhil on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

Don’t underestimate the American voter. I’d guess that a good 30% would believe it. That is, if you can get them to turn off The View or Orcrah.

TugboatPhil on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

Those are libs. They don’t believe he’s a moderate. They’re just the kind of folks who wouldn’t vote Republican or conservative even if a gun was held to their head.

Doughboy on January 7, 2011 at 11:11 AM

Oh please.
Next step: DEFUND ALL USELESS GOVT AGENCIES.
Let the STATES take care of their own backyard.
They fricking live there. They know what the need to do.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:11 AM

I am cautiously optimistic about the GOP’s growth of cajones this week. Dare I believe that they have listened to the voters and will act on our wishes? …..Dare I?

search4truth on January 7, 2011 at 11:13 AM

Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, sponsored the bill.

She would be infinitely better in the Senate than Lamar Alexander or Bob Corker.

Her 2009 ACU rating was 100. Corker was an 84, Alexander was a 68. In 2008, Blackburn received a 96, Corker an 83, and Alexander a 72.

National Journal rated Blackburn a 93.2, Corker a 66, and Alexander a 66.3.

steebo77 on January 7, 2011 at 11:15 AM

search,
Yes you should. The newly grown cajones have not even been revealed yet. Not only do they get the message, but the TP has given them the public support they have been wanting for decades.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:16 AM

And since data shows a trend that CO2 concentration is AFFECTED by Temperature, there is no scientific basis to outlaw CO2.
And since there is no way to really say that this molecule of CO2 was made by man & this molecule of CO2 came out of the ocean when the ocean started warming up, you really have no concrete basis to destroy the economy & people’s lives over this garbage.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:17 AM

Don’t stop with the “Block; go straight to defund! EPA was a Republican mistake (Nixon); let’s take advantage of the situation and kill the dept.!

UkiddenMe on January 7, 2011 at 11:18 AM

Indeed, Republicans should be calling it the ‘Democrat War on Photosynthesis’.

mudskipper on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

I am so stealing that.

Lily on January 7, 2011 at 11:19 AM

So Dear Reader may triangulate on greenie stuff, knowing that those diehards aren’t going to vote Repub no matter what.

Whatever, as long as it helps get the economy moving. He will have a much harder time explaining away the social spending cuts that the libs will NOT forgive him for — primary him perhaps?

Fun times ahead, politically.

GnuBreed on January 7, 2011 at 11:19 AM

Yeah, like anyone’s gonna believe he’s a moderate after the last 2 years.

Doughboy on January 7, 2011 at 11:03 AM
Don’t underestimate the American voter. I’d guess that a good 30% would believe it. That is, if you can get them to turn off The View or Orcrah.

TugboatPhil on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM

Oh there are lots of people who could believe him. They’re most often called “Independent” AKA fence sitters AKA equivocaters who could not make a decision on what underwear to wear in the morning.
Now I do not believe ALL independents are this stupid, just a large number of them.
They are smart enough to know that voting is important.
I curse the rest of the useless masses who don’t even vote.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:20 AM

Indeed, Republicans should be calling it the ‘Democrat War on Photosynthesis’.

mudskipper on January 7, 2011 at 11:08 AM
I am so stealing that.

Lily on January 7, 2011 at 11:19 AM

I’ve used it in my classroom before.
I love it.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:21 AM

Great news. The EPA is the most dangerous threat to America and her economy.

darwin on January 7, 2011 at 11:24 AM

This is getting fun!

gophergirl on January 7, 2011 at 11:24 AM

knowing he will never have to face another election in his life?

Any guarantees that Teh Won would leave office when the Constitution told him He had to? Or could we face a Honduras situation when the dictator’s term of office was up and he, like Chavez, simply refused to leave?

We have to get this one right in 2012 or risk facing that type of constitutional crisis that only a narcissist could bring about.

pdigaudio on January 7, 2011 at 11:26 AM

I’ve used it in my classroom before.
I love it.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:21 AM

the hell you say..!

b..b..but the democrats ‘love’ the planet and the planet loves them. How dare you turn a phrase that suggests otherwise and color them something else than **green**…
/

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:27 AM

it looks as though Rockefeller really feels a need to get ahead of the curve.

As I write, I’m looking at a coal train headed east towards the docks at Newport News Virginia. Coal trains are major source of revenue for the CXS Railroad, and all of that coal is brought out of the earth by UNION miners, many of whom work in West Virginia. Rockefeller isn’t trying “to get ahead of the curve”. He knows he’d have tough time explaining his support for a job-killing bill to the voters who put him in office.

oldleprechaun on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

How many folks have actually been in a greenhouse? Do greenhouses actually emit CO2, nope, they don’t,

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:01 AM

fail.

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

Of course, if Congress passes either a moratorium or a complete ban on enforcement, Barack Obama will almost certainly veto it. If he does, that will show Obama as isolated from the mainstream just when Obama will be trying to position himself once again as a post-partisan moderate for the next election.

This is the part that inside-the-Beltway Republican pundits like Krauthammer seem immune to getting. We know Obama’s going to veto tighter EPA controls, cutbacks on ObamaCare and limits on FCC internet controls. The point is to make him have to veto those moves so you set up a contrast for the swing voters to remember in 2012.

No, from what I’m hearing from those in the real know, is that Zero is going to move to the Right like nobody’s business. His triangulation may well make Bill Clinton blush.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Problem for Obama is he’s never had to basically go it alone before, without having the support of the Democrats’ core special interest groups. Clinton could blow off the far left because they were never his main base and he remembered what happened to him in 1980 when he governed in Arkansas to the left of where he ran, and when he did move to the middle, he didn’t have to kill his own pet project, he sacrificed LBJ’s welfare plan.

Obama, on the other hand, would have to settle for being supported only by the “power at any cost” Democrats if he tries to triangulate — a big group admittedly, but more the Clintons’ group than Obama’s, who as his post-tax cut deal press conference showed, still has a visceral hatred of making deals with Republicans that he can’t control. And the tax cut battle wasn’t his pet project, the way ObamaCare® was. He’s going to have to stuff his ego in a lock box for 20 months to be willing to gut his signature program and act like he likes it, in order to get the swing voters back on his side for 2012.

jon1979 on January 7, 2011 at 11:30 AM

fail.

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

You’re failing to live up to your name.

Perhaps a new name should be in order.

darwin on January 7, 2011 at 11:31 AM

All this “Obama will veto it” stuff is way overblown. IMHO, he only gets to veto when he is given a bill on the issue. If one simply does not fund the agency there is nothing to veto, especially if the funding is rolled into other must pass bills.

Simply kill funding for the agency and put it in something like the debt ceiling increase…Problem solved.

JIMV on January 7, 2011 at 11:34 AM

And millions of people around the world celebrate this act, which saved their jobs from the wealth transfer scam known as Cap and Trade.

KillerKane on January 7, 2011 at 11:35 AM

If skeptics think that this move will be strictly symbolic due to the Democratic majority in the Senate, don’t necessarily rush to that conclusion.

Oh puleeese, let it be.

If he does [veto it], that will show Obama as isolated from the mainstream just when Obama will be trying to position himself once again as a post-partisan moderate for the next election.

Yes, and that would be a dagger in the heart of his reelection campaign. It could be deadly.

petefrt on January 7, 2011 at 11:36 AM

Agree gophergirl :)

cmsinaz on January 7, 2011 at 11:39 AM

Rockefeller better get on the train this time, or the people of West Virginia will pink slip him.

GarandFan on January 7, 2011 at 11:41 AM

Can’t the Congress ZERO fund them?

Daemonocracy on January 7, 2011 at 11:43 AM

How many folks have actually been in a greenhouse? Do greenhouses actually emit CO2, nope, they don’t,

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 11:01 AM
fail.

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

A greenhouse prevents the loss of heat through convection.
I am curious how you say through the link this is some fail thing.
So a greenhouse emits CO2 through your Wiki link?
Perhaps you were alluding to the fact that a greenhouse & the greenhouse effect are 2 separate things.
But I hardly consider it a fail.
And let us not forget that temperature is followed by CO2. CO2 is not directly affecting temperature.
So bcs of climate change throughout the millenia, more or less CO2 is taken up into the atmosphere, based upon the atmospheric temperature.
CO2 is not the cause on any temperature rising.
Water vapor is you major greenhouse gas.
So burn all the plants.
They are responsible for transpiration, ergo introduction of water vapor nito the atmosphere.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:44 AM

And millions of uneducated and ignorant people around the world celebrate this act, which saved their jobs from the wealth transfer scam known as Cap and Trade.

KillerKane on January 7, 2011 at 11:35 AM

This fits better.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:46 AM

The Death Panels will help reduce CO2 emissions by reducing the population. Along with govt funded abortion, the Democrats will save the planet by reducing the population (young and old) which is their goal. They really do not care about the planet or pollution, as shown by the exemptions for China, India, and the third world on these emissions. The overall goal is the economic/political destruction of the US.

jerseyman on January 7, 2011 at 11:47 AM

They really do not care about the planet or pollution, as shown by the exemptions for China, India, and the third world on these emissions. jerseyman on January 7, 2011 at 11:47 AM

In a nutshell.
Hypocrits.
Every last Koyoto shill.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 11:48 AM

I can’t imagine the two Democratic Senators from Virginia would vote against this either. Jim Webb is up for reelection next year. Democrats lost Rick Boucher in the House specifically because of this issue. And of course Joe Machin wouldvote for it as well.

Bob Casey is also up for reelection in 2012, and although he’s been a hard-left Senator up until now, I think even he can smell the coffee on this issue. Pennsylvania is still a huge coal state and there are a lot of coal-fired power plants here that would have to shut down under the EPA rules. Our electric rates are already going up this year thanks to the expiration of a 10-year deal with PECO, and folks here are not going to forget it if Bob Casey votes to make them go up even more.

So that’s at least 5 Democratic votes. I would add Jon Tester as well. Maybe even Claire McCaskill. Surely Ben Nelson will vote for it too.

It’s entirely possible that there could be more than 60 votes in the Senate for this bill. Would Obama dare veto it if it got that big a bipartisan majority in both Houses?

rockmom on January 7, 2011 at 11:58 AM

Umm.. this hasn’t been around since just yesterday.

Murkowski and Rockefeller have been doing this for almost a year people.
Good Grief.

upinak on January 7, 2011 at 11:58 AM

Do the Democrats still want to get rid of the filibuster? They might regret that when Democrat Senators from places like WV and MT start voting with Republicans on stuff like this and they end up putting the One in a position where he has to veto popular bills to prevent sanity from breaking out.

forest on January 7, 2011 at 11:59 AM

Why do Democrats want to starve plants and trees?

RadClown on January 7, 2011 at 12:00 PM

They love to starve plants and trees, just like they love to starve the farmlands of water in Central California! Been there lately? It’s becoming Death Valley II!

Atlanta Media Guy on January 7, 2011 at 12:06 PM

It is a start, but what I want to see is the EPA disbanded altogether. It cannot pass the constitutionality test.

Vashta.Nerada on January 7, 2011 at 12:15 PM

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

present your argument, convince me that “greenhouse gas emission” is essentially the same as that of a real greenhouse, that it is harmful and that this moniker makes sense, or is it merely used to elicit an emotional reaction in the undereducated, such as ….nevermind.

ted c on January 7, 2011 at 12:16 PM

rockmom on January 7, 2011 at 11:58 AM

Yes and Landrieu as well. If she sides with the left on this issue not even her brother (new Mayor of New Orleans) can support her locally.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 12:18 PM

No, from what I’m hearing from those in the real know, is that Zero is going to move to the Right like nobody’s business. His triangulation may well make Bill Clinton blush.

Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Not a chance. Bammie’s marxist-socialist beliefs are deep in his bones. He knows nothing else, and that’s not saying much. He can’t possibly change.

slickwillie2001 on January 7, 2011 at 12:20 PM

fail.

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM
You’re failing to live up to your name.

Perhaps a new name should be in order.

darwin on January 7, 2011 at 11:31 AM

Perhaps the name “huh” would be good? Perhaps “bozo” would be better.

Vince on January 7, 2011 at 12:21 PM

I’ve got a flash for you.

How bout a bill to scrap the political arm of the Democrat party known as the Environmental Protection Agency.

Start over with professionals not professional Democrats.

Besides, between now and the time we reach the debt ceiling we don’t even need and EPA.

Speakup on January 7, 2011 at 12:50 PM

They love to starve plants and trees, just like they love to starve the farmlands of water in Central California! Been there lately? It’s becoming Death Valley II!

Atlanta Media Guy on January 7, 2011 at 12:06 PM

This has opened up a larger market for all of that human feces grown Mexican produce.
OK-I admit, I know only of some Mexican produce grown with people poo.
Hopefully the multi national companies distributing produce are not allowing that to occur.
But we’ll probably never know.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 12:51 PM

If you just get rid of the EPA alone, it will be unbelievable how not only much govt cash this will save, but at how much private sector business growth will be seen.
Let’s try it.
Prove me wrong.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 12:53 PM

I don’t see how this helps Michelle’s seedlings.

Lily on January 7, 2011 at 1:01 PM

search4truth on January 7, 2011 at 11:13 AM

I use to like Reagan’s quote “trust but verify” I’ve since returned to my roots and practice proof first then I’ll believe.

chemman on January 7, 2011 at 1:39 PM

“Obama wants to skyrocket your electric bill. Republicans want to save the American families money.”

Sound like a winning argument to me.

OxyCon on January 7, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 12:51 PM

The food safety act passed by the turncoats in congress is only for us little guys here in the USA not for the large corporate farmers and the importers,

chemman on January 7, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Ed, I’m talking specifically about two sources who can call a number of senators and several dozen congressmen for a lunch meeting the following day and get it.
Kermit on January 7, 2011 at 11:00 AM

Sean Penn and Joy Behar?

Akzed on January 7, 2011 at 1:45 PM

Which part of “not within your authority” was UNCLEAR, folks?

mojo on January 7, 2011 at 1:48 PM

sesquipedalian on January 7, 2011 at 11:28 AM

Sorry ses but greenhouses work via convection and a closed environment the atmosphere is an open enviroment. So called “green house” gases work by absorbing certain band widths of infra-red radiation released by the ground and then re-radiating in all directions allowing some of the energy to be retained by the atmosphere. Whole different sets of mechanisms involved. Unfortunately the term “Green House” gas became part of the lexicon when it really is not a good description of what is happening. So I would say cut with the snark in this case

chemman on January 7, 2011 at 1:48 PM

Oh, and how about a “sense of the congress” resolution, sent directly to the US Supreme Court, the various Circuit courts, etc?

Barry’d have a hard time vetoing that.

mojo on January 7, 2011 at 1:51 PM

The food safety act passed by the turncoats in congress is only for us little guys here in the USA not for the large corporate farmers and the importers,

chemman on January 7, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Yeah. The big corps get to police themselves.
Plus no one is going to China & inspecting like say, apple juice processing plants for safety violations.
I’m not saying our food supply is necessarily tainted.
But USDA & FDA labels mostly meack JACK.
It is mostly the food companies who do not want to see lawsuits & lost sales that pay attention to safety.

Badger40 on January 7, 2011 at 2:51 PM

CO2 being considered a green house gas is ridiculous. All plant life depends on CO2 for its survival and they turn it into Oxygen for the rest of the living on this earth. 9th grade general science, did the environmentalists fail general science?

mixplix on January 7, 2011 at 4:00 PM

CO2 being considered a green house gas is ridiculous.

With what authority do you make such a statement?

oakland on January 7, 2011 at 5:35 PM

present your argument, convince me that “greenhouse gas emission” is essentially the same as that of a real greenhouse, that it is harmful and that this moniker makes sense, or is it merely used to elicit an emotional reaction in the undereducated, such as ….nevermind.

Do you understand the meaning of the term “greenhouse gas”?

oakland on January 7, 2011 at 5:36 PM

Let Obama triangulate to get re-elected, if that’s what he wants to do. If the GOP doesn’t screw up the Congressional and Senate elections in 2012 (which they are entirely capable of doing), all that Obama will be able to clustershtup in his second term are the Supreme Court and foreign policy.

Oh, wait . . .

Mr. Big on January 7, 2011 at 6:13 PM

Clinton could blow off the far left because they were never his main base and he remembered what happened to him in 1980 when he governed in Arkansas to the left of where he ran, and when he did move to the middle, he didn’t have to kill his own pet project, he sacrificed LBJ’s welfare plan.

Obama, on the other hand, would have to settle for being supported only by the “power at any cost” Democrats if he tries to triangulate — a big group admittedly, but more the Clintons’ group than Obama’s, who as his post-tax cut deal press conference showed, still has a visceral hatred of making deals with Republicans that he can’t control. And the tax cut battle wasn’t his pet project, the way ObamaCare® was. He’s going to have to stuff his ego in a lock box for 20 months to be willing to gut his signature program and act like he likes it, in order to get the swing voters back on his side for 2012.

Exactly. I might believe that kermit’s sources think Obama will triangulate hard, but I don’t think Obama will be able keep it up. In any case, his base will desert him and he might even get a primary challenger. Let him triangulate all he wants, that’ll be fun to watch.

YehuditTX on January 7, 2011 at 7:25 PM

When the science conclusively proves that climate is controlled by the Sun, not plant food, leftists will want to regulate the Sun.

Basilsbest on January 8, 2011 at 8:46 AM

How would that look, for dear leader to veto the bill when gas will probably be around $5 a gal by the time the senate gets around to a vote. Gotta make sure he comes across as for the ‘folks’.

Kissmygrits on January 8, 2011 at 10:51 AM