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October 27, 2009

Where Were We When the World Was Burning?

We had a few folks in today's Senate Environment and Public Works hearing on the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act. Our own Justin Guay and Julian Carmona were some of the ones responsible for that great "live-tweeting" you saw keeping you up to date on just who was saying what.

Justin and Julian sent me their thoughts on today's hearing and I wanted to share them with you:

Today the clean energy revolution took a significant step forward with the debate of the chairman's mark of the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act in the Environment and Public Works Committee. We are working hard to strengthen and protect the bill during this process to ensure that it cleans up dirty sources of pollution and provides clean energy jobs.
  • Senator Baucus only spoke for about three minutes, but he said he did not like the target or Clean Air Act authority though he made a point to say that "we must pass common sense legislation, the key word being pass."
  • Senator Voinovich began to attack retaining Clean Air Act authority as creating "uncertainty" for business if the bill were to pass because the Environmental Protection Agency could come back and make further changes to the regulatory environment. Senator Voinovich also attacked the bill's targets, saying we couldn't technically achieve them.
  • Senator Specter then followed up on the Clean Air Act authority attack and challenged that the Clean Air Act authority was something that may needed to be compromised. Boxer replied to Specter afterwards telling him that she would "work with him on his concerns".
  • At the end of the hearing Senator Whitehouse stood up for Clean Air Act authority, saying he firmly believed in it along with many of his colleagues.
  • Senator Klobuchar made clear her strong support of a renewable electricity standard and investment in renewable energy.
  • Senators Kerry, Sanders, Lautenberg and Cardin all delivered "thundering" speeches to the effect that our children will ask what we were doing when the world was burning.
  • We really liked Senator Cardin's line that our kids will ask us where we were when the world was burning. A number of senators gave "thundering speeches." Kerry especially. It was honestly really good especially for a hearing - very positive. Overall, the Democrats laid the smack down on the tired excuses of the past.

Stay tuned - we'll be tweeting and live-blogging again from tomorrow's hearing!

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