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Today in Washington – June 17, 2010

The CEO of BP, Tony Hayward, is testifying today before a House Committee and is expected to get “sliced and diced” by members of the Committee.  The New York Times reports that Hayward will testify this morning that he is “sorry” and that “people lost their lives; others were injured; and the Gulf Coast environment and communities are suffering.  This is unacceptable, I understand that, and let me be very clear: I fully grasp the terrible reality of the situation.”  All eyes will be on Tony Hayward to see how much abuse one man can take in a hearing and to see if this hearing becomes an opportunity for lefties to blame Global Warming for the disaster in an effort to build momentum for Kerry-Lieberman.  Also, expect some shifting of blame to President Bush even though he has been out of office for over a year and a half.

The Senate continues another day of debate on the Tax Extenders bill including language to extend unemployment benefits.  The House will vote on TARP, Jr. and has put off a vote on the DISCLOSE Act.  The conference on the financial regulatory deform bill continues.  The Senate Armed Services Committee will host Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates to sell the START Treaty to Senators concerned about missile defense.

Conservatives should be watching the following issues in Washington DC:

  • Senator Scott Brown – In addition to the management team at BP meeting with President Obama yesterday, Senator Brown (R-MA) made a trip over to the White House to chat about Global Warming.  The Boston Globe reports, “Senator Scott Brown, a freshman Republican from Massachusetts who has sided with Democrats on several key votes, said after meeting briefly with President Obama yesterday that he will not back any climate-change measure that includes a fee on carbon emissions, but he left open the possibility of supporting ‘a comprehensive energy plan.’”  The Kerry-Lieberman Climate Change bill that includes limits on the emissions of energy companies seems to be off the table for Senator Brown.  The Kerry-Lieberman bill sets caps on CO2 emissions from energy use and utility companies, oil companies and other energy manufacturing entities are allowed only certain amounts of CO2 emissions or they are taxed.  Brown told The Globe, “I basically told him I’m not in favor of, nor could I support, a national energy tax or cap-and-trade proposal.”  Conservatives don’t want to see this Gulf of Mexico oil crisis to be a pre-text for a national energy tax.
  • BP’s Global Warming Proposal - The Kerry-Lieberman Global Warming bill being pushed in the Senate was partially written by BP.  The New York Times reports, that Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said last week “It’s been widely reported that a major part of the Kerry-Lieberman bill was essentially written by BP. This is clearly an inconvenient fact: An administration that seems to spend most of its time coming up with new ways to show how angry it is with BP is pushing a proposal that BP helped write.”  As BP executives get pummelled in hearings today, the Senate should wonder why this widely demonized company supported Kerry-Lieberman.  Conservatives need to make sure that the Obama Administration works on a solution to plug the hole in the oil leak and helping to cleanup the Gulf, not trying to use this crisis to pass Global Warming Legislation.

All day Washington will be buzzing about Tony Hayward’s testimony and the actions of BP.  Americans to President Obama – Just “plug the damn hole” and stop using this crisis to push for a job killing Global Warming bill.

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