Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday he will hold a vote on the progressives' Green New Deal - and looks forward to members going on record to support a plan the GOP has lambasted as unacceptably radical, Politico reported. The plan calls for a New Deal-style mobilization to shift the US economy away from fossil fuels such as oil and coal and replace them with renewable sources such as wind and solar power.
Republican Senator John Barrasso, chair of the Senate environment committee, said Democrats were proposing a plan that "raises taxes, that overthrows really a productive energy market that we have right now in this country, raises energy costs, forces people out of work who are working in the energy field". McConnell wants to get Democratic presidential candidates on the record about the controversial, but nevertheless exciting policy moonshot, so that Republicans can hit them with attacks mischaracterizing the deal, as Trump did at his El Paso rally on Monday: "I really don't like their policy of taking away your auto, of taking away your airplane rights, of 'let's hop a train to California, ' of you're not allowed to own cows anymore!"
Conservative talk radio host Brian Mudd says the Green New Deal is environmental socialism. "Give everybody an opportunity to go on record", McConnell told reporters. Thus far, only one candidate, Amy Klobuchar, has explicitly stated she would not support the legislation, while Democrats including Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Cory Booker have expressed their support.
Markey and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of NY led the unveiling of a resolution laying the groundwork for aggressive policy proposals created to combat climate change, which critics argue could be too costly to the economy and in some cases outright not feasible. Vermont Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, who's likely to enter the Democratic primary soon, is also a supporter.More news: May hat-trick as England hand France 44-8 rout READ MORE
Markey predicted more Democrats would sign on as the plan gets better known and said some Republicans may back it.
The resolution calls for the United States to eliminate additional emissions of "planet-warming" carbon dioxide by 2030.
"On Saturday, President Donald Trump mocked the Green New Deal", jokingly calling the Democrats' embrace of the proposal "brilliant".More news: Trump's racist Elizabeth Warren taunts have entered a new phase
The resolution is expected to fail in the Senate.
Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Ocasio-Cortez introduced two companion resolutions to bring the Green New Deal to vote last week. And it made the impolitic statement: "We set a goal to get to net-zero, rather than zero emissions, in 10 years because we aren't sure that we'll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast".
Other Republicans are prepared to watch with glee.
It's unclear exactly what kind of measure McConnell plans to bring up for a vote in the Senate.More news: Ethics commissioner to probe Prime Minister's Office over SNC-Lavalin scandal