Big media outlets now are acknowledging how humiliating the climate deal loss is for President Biden and congressional progressives, reports Kimberly Strassel in the WSJ:
- “The Centerpiece of Biden’s Climate Agenda Is All But Dead,” from Mother Jones.
- “Progressive lawmakers seem resigned to losing their clean energy program,” from Jacobin.
- “Biden’s Incredible Shrinking Climate Plan,” from the New Republic.
- Several activists from the Sunrise Movement, an originator of the Green New Deal, are staging a hunger strike outside the White House.
A Boat Load of Pork for Corporate America
Looking to disguise its climate agenda trouncing, the Biden White House is emphasizing its top-line number for climate tax credits and subsidies, Ms. Strassel explains:
The bill is now an even bigger pig trough for any business, big or small, that claims even tenuous involvement in producing solar or wind power or electric vehicles.
The White House brags that money will even go to companies that aren’t in the renewable sector, via “grants, loans, tax credits and procurement” for “existing industries like steel, cement and aluminum” to help them with “decarbonization.”
Progressives want to tax billionaires like Elon Musk. This bill would make them richer.
In the White House’s fairytale, it claims “souped-up subsidies” will largely make up for the loss of enforcement mechanisms. What these subsidies actually will do is level real damage to energy reliability and to the economy.
These “souped-up subsidies” also promise progressives a raft of executive actions and agency regulations that will force companies into carbon compliance, argues KS.
Steamed Behind Closed Doors
At least some congressional Democrats are playing along, proclaiming the framework a climate victory.
But behind closed doors they are unconvinced—and steaming. They know the huge risks of attempting to impose any enforcement mechanisms by executive fiat. President Obama tried the same thing with his Clean Power Plan, only to get blocked by the Supreme Court. Thanks to Donald Trump’s judicial makeover, appellate courts will look skeptically on White House attempts to pre-empt Congress.
Get Drunk and Get Rolled
All this explains why progressives like Sen. Bernie Sanders aren’t yet signing on to the framework. The question is whether climate will prove a deal breaker.
Progressives have said repeatedly they’d never agree to a bill that didn’t give them their climate demands, and they got rolled. We’ll now see if they meant it.
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