Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) made a quick stop in Copenhagen today to deliver the message to international climate negotiators that he’s been telling the American public for months: there’s “zero” chance that the Senate will pass comprehensive climate legislation.
Inhofe’s drive-by press conference — he spent just two hours in Denmark — was intended to undercut the efforts of American negotiators, including President Obama, who are expected to commit to carbon emissions cuts in the range of 17 percent by 2020.
“I figure you are going to hear from the other side,” Inhofe said, and so he wanted to provide his perspective. Indeed, senators in favor of climate action got the first word: Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) highlighted American action on climate change in a Senate floor address Monday, and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), speaking yesterday at the Bella Center in Copenhagen, promised that the United States would pass a climate bill.
Boxer and Kerry got a boost to their case yesterday when the Congressional Budget Office scored the Senate climate bill they co-authored and found that it would generate a $21 billion surplus over the next 10 years. But that bill is expected to be supplanted by another one being drafted by Kerry and Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.)