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Inhofe: EPW Republicans Will Not Try to Sink Climate Change Measure

Senate Environment and Public Works ranking member James Inhofe (R-Okla.) on Tuesday shrugged off launching an offensive against Chairman Barbara Boxer’s (D-Calif.) massive climate change bill that is expected to be unveiled this week.

Inhofe said the bill — likely to be introduced Wednesday — will easily pass the committee. He said it isn’t necessary for the GOP to try to stop the bill in committee because it faces such an uncertain future in the full Senate.

“Why should the Democrats bring up something that would further entrench them from the American people?— Inhofe said during a briefing with reporters.

Boxer will introduce the measure along with Foreign Relations Chairman John Kerry (D-Mass.). It is modeled after a similar measure that the House passed in June, but it includes stronger greenhouse gas emission restrictions. Absent from the bill, aides say, is a provision on carbon emissions.

In a letter to Boxer Tuesday, a group of GOP Senators noted that “leaving out these and other key provisions makes it impossible to get an objective estimate of the economic impacts of your bill on consumers.—

The letter was signed by GOP Sens. Inhofe, George Voinovich (Ohio), David Vitter (La.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), Mike Crapo (Idaho), Kit Bond (Mo.) and Republican Conference Chairman Lamar Alexander (Tenn.).

Mike Catanzano, Republican deputy staff director for the Environment and Public Works Committee, predicted the panel would hold hearings on the bill the week of Oct. 19, with a markup likely to occur the week after.

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