Mitch McConnell to Force Green New Deal Vote to 'Rattle' Democrats

Mitch McConnell to Force Green New Deal Vote to 'Rattle' Democrats

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Tuesday he'll bring Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's signature climate proposal to a vote on the Senate floor - a move created to put Democrats on the spot.

Sure, McConnell may have been trying to put Democrats on the spot, but if the latter is so adamant about their Green New Deal, why wouldn't they be celebrating and jumping at the chance to vote on it?

"I've noted with great interest the Green New Deal", McConnell told reporters at the Capitol Tuesday afternoon.

Markey told E&E News, "We haven't had a debate on climate change in 10 years, so I think it's very important for us to have as large a debate about the issue as we can".

Ocasio-Cortez's comments suggesting millionaires may have to pay 70 percent in taxes to fund the Green New Deal, coupled with a rocky unveiling, have not helped her case in winning over her more moderate colleagues. Still, from the support it's received among 2020 hopefuls, it appears that the Green New Deal will be a serious factor in the primary - as a talking point, if not policy proposal.

The climate measure is already supported by at least five senators seeking the Democratic nomination for president: Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California, Elizabeth Warren of MA and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.

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Since the Green New Deal resolution was introduced last week, President Donald Trump, Republican lawmakers, and right-wing pundits have spread hysterical falsehoods about the measure and decried it as a "socialist fever dream" that would be political suicide for Democrats to support. It includes a range of goals such as a shift to renewable energy sources, carbon neutrality by 2030, and a federal jobs guarantee. It was officially unveiled to Congress last week by Ocasio-Cortez and Democratic Senator Edward Markey in the form of nonbinding resolutions. The ambitious proposal has been spearheaded by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. He added that the plan would "shut down American energy" and "a little thing called air travel".

Corbin Trent, a spokesman for Ocasio-Cortez, said the quip about cows and airplanes was meant to be ironic, but Trump and other Republicans seized on it as an example of the plan's excesses.

The move is viewed as a political one, aimed at forcing rank-and-file Senate Democrats to take a stance on the progressive proposal, which has been co-sponsored by liberal congressional members and Democratic Senate presidential candidates.

The vote on the health care legislation didn't quite carry the punch Republicans had hoped.

Republicans showed on Tuesday that they are ready to use the resolution as a political weapon against those Democrats.

"The Green New Deal resolution has struck a powerful chord in this country, and Republicans, climate deniers, and the fossil fuel industry are going to end up on the wrong side of history".

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