Waxman-Markey passes House

The vote on HR 2454, the Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), was delayed this afternoon so that Republican leader John Boehner could spend an hour or so reading a super-long proposed amendment to the bill. But I saw on Twitter that the final tally was 219 votes in favor of the bill (211 Democrats and 8 Republicans). 212 House members voted against the bill, and three did not vote.

I'll update soon with more details about the roll call. If most of the Democrats who voted against the bill were Blue Dogs, why did we make so many compromises to appease them?

I wasn't watching the proceedings on C-SPAN, but according to Populista, Steny Hoyer of all people gave "the best speech of the debate by far," prompting long applause.

UPDATE: Here is the roll call. Kate Sheppard of Grist listed the 8 Republicans who voted for the bill: "Bono Mack (Calif), Castle (Del.), LoBiondo (NJ), McHugh (NY), Reichert (Wash.), Smith (NJ), Lance (NJ), Kirk (Ill.)."Populista says, "3 D's voted against #ACES for being too weak. 41 D's voted against it beacuse they thought it was TOO STRONG."

SECOND UPDATE: CQ Politics lists the 52 House members who didn't vote with the majority of their party members on Waxman-Markey. Most represent districts that voted for the other party's presidential nominee last year.

Meanwhile, Senator Claire McCaskill is already planning to make a bill that doesn't do enough do even less: "I hope we can fix cap and trade so it doesn't unfairly punish businesses and families in coal dependent states like Missouri."

My own Congressman Leonard Boswell has made the same bogus argument, though he did end up voting for the bill yesterday. I'm sorry that midwestern utility companies have not been more farsighted in getting away from coal, but they shouldn't now be allowed to wreck this bill. If these utilities invest more in energy-efficiency measures and generation from renewable sources, their ratepayers will not see significant rate hikes and may save money.

Tags: ACES, American Clean Energy and Security Act, Climate change, Global Warming, Waxman-Markey (all tags)



Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

The bill should be called DEUCES, since it was watered down with loopholes, so it will have almost no effect, and possibly negative impacts.

44 Dems voted against it, even after all that "appeasement."  Without appeasements, it might still squeak by.  It's just not worth it.

by esconded 2009-06-26 03:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

I was watching C-Span. Steny Hoyer gave an astounding speech. Boehner couldn't come close, and he knew it, so he basically just read the phone book.

by spikesf 2009-06-28 12:43AM | 0 recs
Did our Sec of the Interior's brother vote Nay

because it was too weak?  

I'm thinking not...

by WashStateBlue 2009-06-26 03:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Did our Sec of the Interior's brother vote Nay

I don't think so. Two of the environmentalist "no" votes were Kucinich and DeFazio. I am not sure who the third one is yet, but I really doubt it's Salazar.

by desmoinesdem 2009-06-26 04:39PM | 0 recs

Looking at the roll call vote it looks like he did vote no.

by esconded 2009-06-26 04:49PM | 0 recs
44 Democrats voted no

including Salazar, but only 3 of those no votes were because the bill was too weak. I don't think Salazar was in that group, but correct me if I am wrong.

by desmoinesdem 2009-06-26 04:56PM | 0 recs
Kirkpatrick perhaps?

She's pretty moderate, but from what I understand was good on enviro issues in the Arizona Legislature.

Btw, here's the Roll Call on the vote:

http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2009/roll477. xml

Let us know if you recognize another progressive among the Nays.

by atdleft 2009-06-26 05:06PM | 0 recs
Populista thinks

it's Pete Stark. Sounds like a good guess to me.

by desmoinesdem 2009-06-26 05:18PM | 0 recs
You may be right, desmoinesdem!

I didn't notice his name in the "No" column. Doh! Pete Stark has a VERY progressive voting record, so he's most likely the third vote.

by atdleft 2009-06-27 07:21AM | 0 recs
That does make sense.

What I said about Ann Kirkpatrick also applies for Harry Mitchell. He's pretty centrist overall, but good on enviro issues. So maybve we had 5 "too weak" No votes?

by atdleft 2009-06-27 07:26AM | 0 recs

I'm just not convinced that this approach will do much. My instincts tell me a carbon tax would be better but I still have to read up on it before I arrive at firmer conclusion.

by Charles Lemos 2009-06-26 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey

I am not the expert on this, but from what I've read, the experts generally agree that a carbon tax makes the most sense. The problem is that politically, it's a dead letter in the U.S. Congress. Cap-and-trade is thought to be less expensive for the economy as a whole than caps without trading.

by desmoinesdem 2009-06-26 04:35PM | 0 recs

I don't think it's that clear-cut, I've read good defenses of cap-and-trade over a carbon tax over the last few months. (Sorry, no links)  Not that I know, but I'm just saying there are good defenses of it.  

by John DE 2009-06-26 06:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House


I stand in awe of our Madame Speaker, who has delivered an incredible gift to Barack Obama and all Democrats.

Say what you will, the coal provisions are weak and counterproductive, the giveaways to polluters are tantamount to no bill at all, whatever.

It is still a massive achievement, one I dared not even dream of before last November; one I reasonably thought a decade or more away.  It is HUGE, it shows vision, nerve, savvy politicking, and is a shining example of what Democrats can do when we work together.

The Peabody Coals, the EXXON-Mobils, the CEI's, the AEI's, FOX, HateRadio, and all the cartel-fed mouthpieces trashed this bill for weeks, and yet somehow against all odds Madame Pelosi got'er done.

Here's a special bottle of Veuve Clicquot, a vintage Brut to highlight the Brute force within a velvet voice that is Madame Speaker Pelosi, our leader in the House.

Well done.

by dembluestates 2009-06-26 04:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

[quote]Here's a special bottle of Veuve Clicquot, a vintage Brut to highlight the Brute force within a velvet voice that is Madame Speaker Pelosi, our leader in the House.[/quote]

Well, damn, I know very little about your politics but I applaud your choice of champagne.  Just gave a bottle exactly as you describe as a gift to a client at the close of difficult transaction.

by InigoMontoya 2009-06-26 05:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

My Politics are simple:  Make all states Dem Blue.

I applaud your good taste in your choice of gifts.

I picked this particular champagne to toast Madame Speaker because the word "Veuve" means "Widow" in french, and the fierce attention to detail and devotion to quality of the House of Widow Clicquot has made her Brut Champagne legendary.  Fitting.

by dembluestates 2009-06-26 07:48PM | 0 recs
I'm of mixed emotions...

The "clean coal" and nuclear provisions suck. The renewable goal is too low to matter all that much. Oh, and "cap and trade" is unproven in its effectiveness.

Still, it's a start. From what I understand, we got some improvements (like the Titus-Giffords-Heinrich Amendment slipped into the final bill's language). It could have been worse.

I ultimately called my Congresscritter and asked her to support HR 2454. She obliged. I'm mildly pleased, but still hoping the Senate doesn't crap out on us and we get a decent bill out of conference.

by atdleft 2009-06-26 04:21PM | 0 recs
the Senate will make this bill worse

That's guaranteed, because we can't do this with budget reconciliation. We will lose some Ds, and we all know how we get Rs--more corporate giveaways.

A friend e-mailed me with a pretty good argument for the bill anyway:

Nonetheless, while acknowledging its numerous faults, I remain supportive of the bill.  First, I think that there are some helpful measures within it that have gone underreported such as higher appliance standards, better building codes, and the establishment of a smart grid.  Second, while a 20% renewable standard by 2020 means little for Iowa, it is significant progress for states like Kentucky who use next to no renewable energy.  Third, I feel it is important that we pass some sort of climate legislation prior to Copenhagen in December so that the administration has a starting point for international negotiations, especially with China and India.  Third, I feel that it is important to officially lay out reductions goals in order to establish accountability for future efforts.  Fourth, I feel that this represents a first step in the right direction, even if it is a small one.  If trends continue, in the coming years the effects of climate change will become even more apparent.  Furthermore, there is a generational divide on this issue, and as a different political generation takes the reigns there is a greater chance that this legislation will be strengthened.  Finally, I think there is value in writing to legislators regarding this legislation.  The fact that they do not hear enough from their constituents on the issue of climate change makes it very easy for them not to make the difficult decisions needed to resolve the problem.

I understand that point of view.

by desmoinesdem 2009-06-26 04:37PM | 0 recs

You may be right, although I'm hearing from some enviro groups that they will be redoubling their efforts in the coming weeks to stop any further weakening in the Senate. I'm really nervous, because as you say "The Mod Squad" of Blue Dog Dems and not-so-radical-right Reeps will demand their usual pound of flesh in order to allow any final bill to survive a cloture vote. This is why I was hoping for a stronger House bill to compete in reconciliation.

by atdleft 2009-06-26 05:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

Thank You for the increase in all of our taxes and the mass job transfer out of the US. Every household will pay from $1200 to $7000 a year more for electric and oil. Our gasoline will be going up 74%. Now Thats Change we can believe in!

This has to stop in the Senate. Our elected officials are ignoring us all.

by Freetown Bill 2009-06-26 08:05PM | 0 recs
Thanks for your input

I'm sure your ass still hurts from losing in November, though.

by Reaper0Bot0 2009-06-26 08:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Thanks for your input

Not at all. I don't blindly vote for a party I vote for integrity. Something that is lacking across both parties.

Mature input though!

by Freetown Bill 2009-06-26 08:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

No, our elected officials are not ignoring us all.  They are ignoring you.  In this instance, they're accommodating my desires.

by InigoMontoya 2009-06-26 09:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

OK, you have scared us with the "you now have to pay more" talk...now proove it will happen.  If they crank the price up more, less gets used and they make less money OR people start looking into ways to make thier own elec and the power companies loose that way too.

You sound like someone pitching a fit because things will not stay the way you are comfortable with.

by Hammer1001 2009-06-26 11:24PM | 0 recs
Oh noezz!

You mean we can save money by just dying? Yes, then let's just do what the GOP wants and "Drill, Baby, Drill!" Ultimately we'll die, baby, die from the climate crisis. But hey, at least the human race will go out with a bang!

by atdleft 2009-06-27 07:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

In response to the comments that this energy bill contains the biggest energy tax ever, I did the math on the proposed energy bill and the CBO's cost projections. At the projected cost of $175.00 a year per household, not per person, we would spend $.48 per day toward the energy bill. Now I have two dogs and as a result I spend approximately $300.00 a month on my dogs. I calculated the per day cost of owning my dogs, $9.86 per day. Groceries, we are a pretty average family and spend about $450.00 a month on food. That is a per day cost of $14.79. I am pretty sure that I can cough up $.50 a day to have cleaner energy. Like the President said, we shouldn't be afraid of the future. How do the critics think we got to level of ingenuity that the country is at now? I think the rhetoric needs to simmer down and lawmakers need to actually look to the future and embrace it.

by grovergirl 2009-06-27 07:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

I appreciate your mathematical calculations.  Your ability to add and subtract are quite impressive.  However, if one were to truly examine the CBO numbers, it is fairly clear the the immediate cost per household is considerably higher than the "Net Cost per Household" figure you used as your baseline.

As stated in the CBO report, "Reducing emissions to the level required by the cap would be accomplished mainly by stemming demand for carbon-based energy by increasing its price.  Those higher prices, in turn, would reduce households' purchasing power."

"According to CBO's estimates, the gross cost of complying with the GHG capand-trade program delineated in H.R. 2454 would be about $110 billion in 2020(measured in terms of 2010 levels of consumption and income), or about $890
per household..."

Too many assumptions and speculations have to be made to reach that final estimate of $175.00 net cost per household.

More importantly, if one were to read HR 2454, one would realize that the supposed desired outcome of cleaner energy sources and reduced carbon emissions will not be accomplished through this program.

Unfortunately, Cap and Trade has become another example of partisan politics.  The passing of this bill was more about providing the $645,000,000,000 in revenues Obama budgeted to come from Cap and Trade before the bill had even een presented to the house!

by robert18966 2009-06-27 01:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

Everyone claiming the bill is too expensive to American families keeps forgetting EXXON-Mobil just posted the LARGEST PROFITS EVER MADE, by any corporation EVER.  We already HAD $4 gas, and we paid it while getting NOTHING back from the oil companies.

I would be happy to pay $4 gas or heating oil again if it means we are making an investment in emissions reduction, clean energy, and EXXON-Mobil thought it unfair and outrageous, just like I felt when I dug into my pocket for the fifty-dollar bill to fill up my car last year.

I could care less what the CBO projects in 2020, really.  They have no idea in the world what the Energy cartel will do to prices this Fall, let alone in 10 years.

by dembluestates 2009-06-27 05:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Waxman-Markey passes House

I understand that the bill may not be effective or what environmental groups want to see but it still is not a huge financial burden on a typical household, using your numbers, rounding out at $2.44 a day.  I just don't think the refusal of the bill should be based on scare tactics regarding the HUGE costs to citizens.  

If the bill is flawed then put through a better bill, I'm all for that.  We need environmental changes in our country.  We need better, cleaner, cheaper sources of fuel/energyto run our society.  Find the best practices and put them into play, but there has to be movement in a positive direction at some point and the cost of a latte a day shouldn't be the sticking point.

by grovergirl 2009-06-27 05:08PM | 0 recs


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