Senator Inhofe: They’re ‘Cover’ Amendments

Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) held a conference call with bloggers today to talk about energy policy and the pending Senate vote on the McConnell Amendment, the legislation that mirrors Inhofe’s original bill to block EPA regulation of greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

He dismissed the value of competing amendments proposed by Democratic critics.

In order to try to keep from passing the amendment, that is the Infhofe-McConnell amendment, they have now offered these other amendments as cover amendments.

One is by Rockefeller, and that is a two-year delay. Well that doesn’t help a bit, because all that does is say we’re not changing anything but we’re going to delay it for two years.

We have, and I could name the names of companies that are looking at making giant investments, hiring people, but they can’t do it until they can predict what we’re going to do with the regulation of CO2.

The other one is by Baucus, and Baucus is saying, “Well, we’re going to exempt the small guys, “ and it’s called the tailoring rule. But that’s doesn’t work…. And specifically talks about farms – they would not be under the EPA. Well, you talk to the American Farm Bureau, and I have all their quotes in front of me – and again, I have all this on my website, and if you go to that, you would find they are saying “No.”

If you impose this hardship and this regulation on the utilities, on the manufacturers, that’s going to come right down and that’s going to affect us in the higher price of energy, and we, the American Farm Bureau and others, know it.

The Senator mentioned the third amendment a little later, one being developed by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). The Detroit Free Press reports on it, “Sen. Debbie Stabenow seeks to delay greenhouse gas regulations“:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow is proposing a two-year delay in the enforcement of new greenhouse gas regulations proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a move that could help moderate Democrats with business interests in their states while denying a Republican attempt to derail EPA’s plans to regulate carbon emissions altogether.

Well, judging by that report, it would seem that the point of that amendment would be to provide political cover.

The National Association of Manufacturers is sponsoring TV ads in Michigan and other states urging Senators to stand up for their state’s manufacturers and opposing by opposing the EPA’s overregulation. Here’s the TV spot that encourages Michiganders to contact Sen. Stabenow and the other one for Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI). Our website is

Sen. Inhofe’s committee webpage with the resources he alluded to is here. His office blogged a reaction to Sen. Baucus’ amendment here.

Sen. Inhofe had nice things to say about the National Association of Manufacturers and our efforts to prevent the EPA’s regulatory power grab. We thank him.

He also asked for a little publicity for an issue that’s very important to him, overcoming the political and ethnic violence in the Ivory Coast. His office issued a news release today, “Inhofe Calls on U.S. to Support New Elections in Cote D’Ivoire.”

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  • […] The U.S. Senate may vote on this tomorrow. There are several competing amendments, but the one that will put this to bed is the McDonnell Amendment, which completely prevents the EPA abusing its power in order to regulate greenhouse gases, which is what we want. (Some of the Democratic “alternatives” are discussed by an industry group here. […]

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