Originally answering a question from National Journal, Will Midterms Move the Needle on Energy Issues?, CEA’s David Holt urges the U.S. Senate to structure an Energy debate under the same rules judicial nominees are now considered. Go Nuclear.
U.S. Senators should go nuclear on an energy bill.
What would happen if the same rules and procedures which streamline the approval of judicial nominees were applied to a debate on U.S. energy policy? The Keystone XL Pipeline would have congressional approval, overreaching EPA regulations would be kept in check, and the country would be benefiting from energy policy that works with, not against, the U.S. economy.
It’s a mad idea.
The Obama Administration is aggressively pursuing its agenda for energy and environmental regulations, some of which fail to contemplate economic impacts. Meanwhile, the U.S. Congress is stalemated, stuck in time like the Hatter in Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. “There is a place. Like no place on Earth,” Lewis Carroll’s Hatter says. “A land full of wonder, mystery, and danger! Some say to survive it: You need to be as mad as a hatter. Which luckily I am.” Carroll wasn’t writing about the U.S. Senate. But, looking at what has transpired over the past few weeks in the Senate, you wonder if your Senator needs to be as mad as a hatter to be effective in the world’s most deliberative body.
The U.S. Senate is designed to be the saucer that cools the heat of a raucous U.S. House. Under Majority Leader Reid’s thumb, the U.S. Senate is stuck in a never ending, mad tea party. Fifty-eight members of the U.S. Senate, 241 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, and 78 percent of registered voters all support the Keystone XL Pipeline, but the U.S. Senate remains gridlocked.
Senate Democrats may start to feel trapped in this wonderland, unable to advance a solution for their constituents who want to see Keystone XL built. A recent poll conducted on behalf of Consumer Energy Alliance found that voters in Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Montana, and New Hampshire would be less likely to vote for a Democrat candidate if President Obama further delayed or denied the permit for Keystone XL. Despite the overwhelming support for the project, a congressional solution seems doomed.
The whole idea of it is just maddening.