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Mitch McConnell will make Democratic senators vote on the ‘Green New Deal’

Move could be part of 2020 strategy for GOP and McConnell himself

Sen. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., lead the Green New Deal resolution. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that he intends to call up the “Green New Deal ” for a vote in the Senate.

The Kentucky Republican’s maneuver is likely an effort to both get the many Democratic senators running for president on the record on the resolution, as well as to demonstrate that there are senators on both sides of the aisle opposed to the outline.

“I’ve noted with great interest the Green New Deal. And we’re going to be voting on that in the Senate,” McConnell said, saying it will, “Give everybody an opportunity to go on record and see how they feel about the Green New Deal.”

Each of the five Democratic senators who have announced White House bids are already signed on as co-sponsors to the Senate version of the resolution, which Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Edward J. Markey is leading in the chamber.

“Republicans don’t want to debate climate change, they only want to deny it,” Markey said in responding to McConnell. “They have offered no plan to address this economic and national security threat and want to sabotage any effort that makes Big Oil and corporate polluters pay. The principles of the Green New Deal resonate with the American people – a mission to save all of creation by investing in massive job creation. The Green New Deal resolution has struck a powerful chord in this country, and Republicans, climate deniers, and the fossil fuel industry are going to end up on the wrong side of history.”

Trump: Green New Deal sounds like a ‘high school term paper that got a low mark’

Markey and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York led the unveiling of a resolution laying the groundwork for aggressive policy proposals designed to combat climate change, which critics argue could be too costly to the economy and in some cases outright not feasible.

McConnell, who is running for re-election in 2020, also seems sure to run next year on his opposition to the proposal. His last Senate campaign featured his efforts to stop environmental actions by President Barack Obama’s administration, something he repeatedly referred to as the “war on coal.”

That included appearances by McConnell on Capitol Hill and back in Kentucky with Jimmy Rose from “America’s Got Talent,” who performed the song, “Coal Keeps the Lights On .”

Democrats downplay appearance of disunity on Green New Deal

Bridget Bowman contributed to this report.

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