More theft incoming... i weep for my children.
By IAN TALLEY and SIOBHAN HUGHES
WASHINGTON -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has scheduled a vote Friday on a sprawling climate-change bill, signaling the Democratic leadership's confidence that it can overcome objections from Farm Belt Democrats.
Opponents and supporters of landmark climate legislation are ramping up their public-relations campaigns ahead of the planned vote. The Obama administration is pushing the measure as a job-creator, while critics, including many Republicans, are portraying the bill as an energy tax that could slow the economy.
The legislation, co-sponsored by House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman (D., Calif.) and Rep. Edward Markey (D., Mass.), had stalled last week because of opposition from Farm Belt Democrats concerned their states will face heavier costs under the proposed law to curb greenhouse-gas emissions.
Discussions were still continuing Tuesday. Josh Syrjamaki, chief of staff for one of those Democrats, Minnesota Rep. Timothy Walz, said his boss hadn't yet given his support for the bill because he hadn't yet seen details of a deal.
Drew Hammill, a spokesman for Ms. Pelosi, said in an email late Monday evening: "There are some issues still under discussion, but we are confident we can resolve them by the time the bill goes to the floor on Friday."
The bill aims to cap greenhouse-gas emissions at 17% of 2005 levels by 2020 and at roughly 80% by 2050, creating a market for companies to buy and sell the right to emit carbon dioxide and other gases. It also mandates a new renewable electricity standard and establishes new national building codes.
It would mark the first time that either of the two chambers of Congress have voted to impose mandatory reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions -- a goal President Barack Obama wants to achieve before a round of international climate talks in December in Copenhagen.
Mr. Obama on Tuesday said the House climate bill is "extraordinarily important for our country," urging House members "to come together and pass it." The president said it would create millions of new "green" jobs that can't be shipped overseas.
Mr. Obama also sent his top cabinet officials, including his Energy, Interior, Transportation and Labor secretaries, around the country to gather public support.
Write to Ian Talley at email@example.com and Siobhan Hughes at firstname.lastname@example.org
MORE IN US