GOP to Protest Energy Bill
House GOP leaders blasted Democrats for unveiling their energy package in the dead of night on Monday and pledged to protest it during the seven hours allotted for floor debate Tuesday.
After a GOP Conference meeting, party leaders came out swinging against the bill, which was unveiled late Monday night in the Rules Committee. They say that the proposal will not spur energy production because it lacks state revenue-sharing provisions and that it is intended to provide cover to vulnerable Democrats on a drilling vote.
This bill knows how not to encourage [drilling], Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said. Its just there … for nothing but political reasons.
Kicking off what is likely to be a noisy day on the floor, Republicans began by delivering rowdy speeches and stalling business by seeking votes on procedural motions.
Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said GOP Members are going to continue to fight all day. Its going to be a whale of a fight. Stay tuned.
Democratic leaders maintain that Republicans finally have their chance to take yes for an answer by voting for an energy package that allows for offshore drilling.
Hopefully, they wont simply opt for political slogans but energy solutions, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said.
But a senior GOP aide said Republicans dont feel any political heat to support the bill because of its drilling provisions.
While GOP leaders said their members might support individual provisions in the bill, Republicans are unlikely to support the collective measure, another GOP leadership aide said.
Republicans will have one chance Tuesday to seek a vote on an alternative energy plan during a procedural vote known as a motion to recommit.
GOP leaders are keeping mum on what they plan to use as the focus of that motion, which they have used in the past to try to force politically tough votes on Democrats.