President Obama's proposal to open vast expanses of American coastlines to oil and natural gas drilling drew criticism from both sides in the drilling debate.
The office of John Kerry, who has staked out a key role shepherding climate legislation, sends over a statement saying that offshore drilling — which Obama announced he’s moving forward on — could help get 60 votes in the Senate for climate change legislation.
Kerry spokesperson Whitney Smith emails:“President Obama once again today reaffirmed his commitment to passing comprehensive energy and climate legislation.
“In the difficult work of putting together a 60 vote coalition to price carbon, Senator Kerry has put aside his own long-time policy objections and been willing to explore potential energy sources off our coasts as part of a suite of alternative solutions. He and his colleagues are committed to find acceptable compromises on onshore and offshore oil and gas exploration, conducted in an environmentally sensitive manner that protects the interests of the coastal states.
“They’ve met with Senators who oppose drilling and those who support it and they’ve worked for months to determine the best solutions.”
Kerry and Senator Lindsey Graham are developing climate change legislation that they hope will attract bipartisan support in the Senate. As the statement above suggests, Kerry believes that drilling could help win over some GOP support for this approach.
But the question remains: Which Republican Senators can be persuaded to support even a “compromise” version of climate change legislation? http://tinyurl.com/ylxc4t4