Energy Conference Update #25 (Bingaman Reax)

November 14, 2003
12:00 AM
It appears that the Great Energy Conference Blackout of 2003 may end tomorrow. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the GOP seems intent on cramming its energy bill down everyone’s throats like a French farmer feeding his goose. (My words, not Jeff’s.) The Republicans remind us that they are keeping their pledge to give the public, the media and the Democrats a 48 hours before the final conference meeting to digest this lengthy, complex and important legislation. So, that means that the GOP will have had 71 days (since Sept. 5) to self-deal on energy while the public, the media and the Democrats get a whopping two days!! to examine text that is supposed to address the critical energy challenges facing our Nation. That’s my reaction. More importantly, here is Sen. Bingaman’s reaction: “It’s unfortunate that the Republicans have decided to release their conference report over a weekend, when many Senators are not around. Under those disappointing circumstances, we’ll do the best we can to digest the details, analyzing this text for good provisions that we will be happy to support as well as those provisions which must be fixed or removed. I’m also anxious to see what concrete basis there is in the text that can prop up the claims that this is a ‘jobs bill.’ “Basically, it all comes down to what they have put in the bill and what they have left out. It’s my sincere hope that the Republicans tomorrow release a strong and balanced energy package that all Americans can support.” # # #