Let's Hope Baucus Doesn't 'Gum Up' Climate Bill

He's already trying to water down
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 29, 2009 12:25 PM CDT
Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Chairman Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., left, confer.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Now that his committee is done with health care reform, Max Baucus has time to turn his attention to the climate bill. As a member of Barbara Boxer's environmental panel, "his ability to gum up the works is significant," writes Kate Sheppard. Essentially, he may do to the climate bill what he did to the health care bill—hold it up, then water it down in the name of bipartisanship.

“I support passing common-sense climate legislation,” he says. But “the key word in that sentence is ‘passing.’” Among other things, Baucus thinks the target of cutting emissions 20% by 2020 is too ambitious, though it's actually "easily attainable," writes Sheppard in Mother Jones. The good news: Democrats should have enough votes to move it out of committee with or without Baucus. And Boxer isn't having any of this bipartisan argument: "Global warming isn't waiting for who's a Democrat or who's a Republican.”