According to The Hill, the global warming bill currently being drafted by Senators John Kerry (D-MA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Joe Lieberman (I-CT) faces an uphill climb, notably due to its token expansion of offshore drilling. One component, revenue sharing with the states, is being used as bait to get pro-drilling lawmakers to sign on.
But Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), who co-authored an efficiency-only bill last year and is seen as a key vote for any energy tax moving forward, has repeatedly rejected sharing royalty revenue with the states.
Some Senators tried to include revenue sharing in his energy efficiency bill last summer, but the measure was defeated largely due to Bingaman’s opposition. And with Bingaman’s all-but-guaranteed refusal to accept that measure moving forward, it’s unlikely that Kerry-Graham-Lieberman will include the offshore drilling provisions Senator Graham promised as a reason for his support of the bill.
This latest news comes shortly after it became clear that the new energy tax would also not include drilling in ANWR, despite the fact that drilling in ANWR was necessary for Senator Lisa Murkowski’s (R-AK) support. Murkowski was, coincidentally, the other co-sponsor of the Bingaman energy efficiency bill.
For weeks we have heard that this latest energy tax will be a middle of the road approach, a bill that criminalizes carbon but also promotes more drilling.
But the whole idea of having to swallow a massive new energy tax in order to get offshore drilling always appeared to be a sham. This latest news proves that it is.