Talking to Kerry post vote

We went backwards today on the Energy Bill. While, perhaps, this is better than the 2005 Energy Bill, the air has been drained out of my (and many others’) enthusiasm for the bill.  Better than nothing. Probably.  Guess what, Senator Kerry would have supported a much better energy bill, without a doubt.  He wants a (far) better energy economy in the United States and is committed to addressing Global Warming.


So, well, Senator Kerry faced an angry conference call with a bunch of energy bloggers because, well, we’re angry and he was our target for that. 

Senator Kerry voted yes (perhaps unhappily)  with the Energy Bill, stripped of the renewable electricity standard (RES) and stripped of ends of tax subsidies for Exxon-Mobil.  And, well, the first questions out of the gate:  Why not force a filibuster

We went through the filibuster, if we go through this process every single time, we won’t get any business done.

We lose every time we do this …

The problem. Do “we lose”?  Is that the reality?

… If these guys continue to be obstructionist, then we will force them to filibuster next year and show the American public who is the obstacle to progress …

Well, after the New Year, with all due respect, really sounds like Manana

I know we’re stuck in the position where the President has the upper hand when it comes to the budget.]

Newt Gringrich played that hand and lost.  We know that …

The question:  Newt Gingrich played this hand on something the American people did not support, against a President the majority of Americans supported.  Does that sound similar to the Republicans fighting to defend tax subsidies for Exxon Mobil executives?

Now, there is a real issue here to consider.  There is a lot of work required to make filibusters work, to have that media impact that is desired.  Were the Democratic Senators ready for this battle?  Had the prep work been done to lay the foundation for a Christmas Eve filibuster battle with staff and members and press (and lobbyists) stuck on the Hill rather than home with their families?  Perhaps (actually, probably) not.

From the vantage of the Blogosphere podium, time to ask:  Why not?

The Roadblock Republicans are blocking the routes forward to a better energy future.

Time to make this clear … extremely clear … to all Americans.

We have a continuing resolution that has many things that need to get done …

We have people who barely get elected … sometimes they’re not with us … we have to recognize

Ah, we needed to vote on the energy bill so that we can get to the people’s business. Yet, as the renewables get stripped from the energy bill, the Omnibus funding bill will have some $40 billion in subsidies for nuclear power and fossil fuels with perhaps $10 billion for renewables. Is this what the American public want? What our energy situation requires? What Global Warming demands?

As for Global Warming, there is Bali 

Senator Kerry expected this conference call to be about Bali. After all, he’d traveled there (in what was likely an exhausting trip) to give to delegates a different perspective on America and the American situation than they might receive from the Bush delegation.  Rather than a cool conference call about Bali, Senator Kerry instead faced some angry energy activists ready for a convenient target.  But, someone did ask about Bali.

Bali Conference is among one of the most important things going on in the world … We are literally courting disaster without a sense of disaster about it … I went to Bali to convince the delegates that there are things happening in Congress …

It was great to have Senator Kerry in Bali to provide a different face on America than the Administration’s.

there is a bill out of the Environment and Public Works, which was difficult to achieve …

And, he said that Senator Reid has promised that “it will be brought to the floor”.  Have to say that  the globe would be better served with a little less energy dedicated to the Lieberman-Warner Climate InSecurity Act, with its substantive failings that inhibit, rather than help move along, real action to confront Global Warming.

to communicate that the Democrat Congress is dedicated to doing something about Global Warming … state compacts that put more than half the American economy under mandatory emissions caps …

Senator Kerry has a list of real things that are happening, real movement.   

I am incensed that this Administration has made this nation the biggest single obstacle at Bali, it is a disgrace …

Senator, thank you for saying this. 

As you are aware, you are not alone in those emotions.

Al Gore in Bali:

“My own country, the United States, is principally responsible for obstructing progress in Bali.”

NOTE: For other perspectives: see David Roberts over at GristJulia Bovey at NRDC, and KerryVision.


4 responses to “Talking to Kerry post vote

  1. Thanks for providing this information.

    It’s a difficult decision for us to live with… the slowness and the deliberate obtuseness of some people.

    Appreciate the viewpoints you’ve shared from Senator Kerry. He’s a good one and on our side.

    I was thrilled that he went to Bali to give a hand.

  2. Thanks for the summary, A Siegel. This is quite frustrating; alas, the Founding Fathers set up the Senate to slow everything down. We better get more Dems in the Senate in ’08, or I don’t know what the future is going to bring us.

  3. Rome is burning and the Senate is throwing boons to the woodchoppers.
    Please; the clock is ticking here.
    Where is Brutus?

  4. I thought the energy bill and the topic of Republican obstruction was an important conversation to have with the Senator, but I’m commenting to thank you for also bringing up the subject of the Bali conference and my questions to Senator Kerry.
    As you know, he was the only representative of the US Congress at Bali, and he had quite a lot to say to us on the call about his short visit there.
    I’ve posted my thoughts on our discussion with Sen. Kerry at

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