Climate Bill's Best Hope? Drill, Baby, Drill

Kerry/Graham compromise could pick up 2-4 votes
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 14, 2009 1:13 PM CDT
Climate Bill's Best Hope? Drill, Baby, Drill
Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, and John Kerry, D-Mass., appear on "Fox News Sunday" in Washington, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2008.   (AP Photo/FOX News Sunday, Freddie Lee)

(Newser) – The new climate bill introduced with some fanfare by John Kerry and Lindsey Graham actually has a fighting chance of getting through the Senate, thanks to its offshore drilling provision. Despite Democrats’ supermajority, cap-and-trade legislation probably only had between 52 and 55 votes before this. But this bill, which also includes nuclear energy support, could peel Republicans off the sidelines, writes Nate Silver.

At, Silver looked at each coastal state to determine the new bill’s impact. Drilling is probably what brought Graham aboard in the first place, and likely also swings Lisa Murkowski. It takes Mark Begich from a leaner to a yes, and could encourage Mary Landrieu and George LeMieux, among other less likely candidates. Overall, Silver concludes, the drilling should add two to four votes, giving the legislation a puncher’s chance. (Read more Nate Silver stories.)

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