McCain vows another vote on energy rationing bill

by William Yeatman on May 11, 2004

in Politics

At a May 6 hearing, Senator John McCain (R-Az.) vowed to seek a second vote before the end of this Congress on his bill to cap greenhouse gas emissions. McCain is the chief co-sponsor along with Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.) of the Climate Stewardship Act, S. 139, which would create the infrastructure necessary to ration hydrocarbon energy.

McCain made the remarks at a May 6 hearing of the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, which he chairs. The purpose of the hearing was to promote global warming alarmism. Notable was the testimony of Paul Epstein, M.D., the well-known expert on anything that might further his political agenda. Epstein tried to associate the increasing incidence of childhood asthma with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, although he never made the connection clear.

S. 139 does not have the votes to be passed out of the Environment and Public Works Committee, yet McCain secured a vote for it on the Senate floor last October 30, when weaker version of the bill was defeated 43 to 55. McCain forced Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) to schedule this vote on S. 139 in exchange for McCains agreement to allow the Domenici energy bill to be replaced by the Daschle energy bill from the previous Congress. That switch required unanimous consent under Senate rules.

Rumors are circulating on Capitol Hill that McCain plans to force another vote on S. 139 by using the same tactics if his party leadership requires his vote on some key procedural matter this summer. It is also rumored that Senator John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) is urging his ten Democratic colleagues who voted no on S. 139 last October to switch their votes and thereby pass the bill. It is surmised by some Senate staff that the Kerry presidential campaign believe this outcome would help Kerry and hurt President Bush in the election.

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