WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 (UPI) — The support of U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., for legislation to limit greenhouse gas emissions is a key development on the issue, analysts say.
Graham’s support for controversial climate change legislation could provide crucial political capital for the measure, giving it momentum to bypass dubious Democrats who fear electoral effects in their districts and Republicans who oppose it as an “energy tax,” Hearst Newspapers reported Sunday.
“It’s hard to overstate the significance of this,” Dan Lashof, director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, told the newspapers. “It ensures that the Senate bill will be bipartisan” and “demonstrates that there is a pathway to 60 votes to overcome a filibuster” and win Senate passage.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, told Hearst an announced partnership between Graham and Democratic colleague John Kerry of Massachusetts on the issue could “mark a shift in the climate debate.”
Graham has drawn criticism from Republicans for teaming with Kerry to develop a bipartisan framework tying greenhouse gas emissions reductions to new nuclear power nationwide and expanded offshore drilling, the news service reported.
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