Democratic News

At the request of Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman today suspended any further mark-up of energy legislation for this session of Congress. Instead, the Chairman will propose comprehensive and balanced energy legislation that can be added by the Majority Leader to the Senate Calendar for potential action prior to adjournment. Noted Bingaman, “It has became increasingly clear to the Majority Leader and to me that much of what we are doing in our committee is starting to encroach on the jurisdictions of many other committees. Additionally, with the few weeks remaining in this session, it is now obvious to all how difficult it is going to be for these various committees to finish their work on energy-related provisions. “Finally, and perhaps most importantly,” Bingaman said, “the Senate’s leadership sincerely wants to avoid quarrelsome, divisive votes in committee. At a time when Americans all over the world are pulling together with a sense of oneness and purpose, Congress has an obligation at the moment to avoid those contentious issues that divide, rather than unite, us.” Bingaman will continue to consult and build consensus with members of his committee, with other committee chairs and with other Senators as he finalizes a proposal to present to the Majority Leader. # # #