Should Senate Democrats embrace a short-term delay on the EPA's greenhouse gas regulations to give Congress more time to write its own climate and energy legislation?
The agency's efforts to regulate greenhouse gas emissions are being assailed on Capitol Hill. Perhaps the most potent effort comes from coal-state Democrat Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, who introduced legislation last week that would delay EPA regulation for two years. Republicans in the House and Senate would go even further: They're seeking to ban the agency from regulating emissions altogether. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson is urging Congress to pass climate change legislation, but she says she will proceed with regulations in the meantime to give industry certainty.
What are the political ramifications for lawmakers when they either support or oppose legislation like this? Would a two-year delay prevent the climate debate from becoming political dynamite in the November midterm elections?