CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The U.S. Senate on Tuesday rejected a procedural motion on the Green New Deal, an effort to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions and address the nation’s top environmental concerns including climate change.
Republicans forced the vote, in which all 53 Republicans voted against the motion. Democrats Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Doug Jones of Alabama and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona opposed the measure, as did independent Angus King of Maine.
Forty-three senators, all of whom are members of the Senate Democratic Caucus, voted present.
The Green New Deal would, among other actions, aim to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions with net-zero emissions by 2050. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., introduced the bill the Senate considered Tuesday.
“While I appreciate the renewed conversation around climate change that the Green New Deal and its supporters have sparked, I think we need to focus on real solutions that recognize the role fossil fuels will continue to play. That’s why I voted against the resolution today,” said Manchin, the ranking member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
“I have said it before: Manmade climate change is real and it’s a serious threat to our citizens, to our economy, to our environment, to our national security and to our world. This climate problem is a massive one and we must act, but aspirational documents will not solve this crisis — real solutions focused on innovation will.”
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., has spoken multiple times on the Senate floor in opposition to the Green New Deal.
“There is no question that the Green New Deal is a bad deal for West Virginia families, workers, and businesses, and today’s vote makes it clear that policymakers on both sides of the aisle know it. Not only is this proposal unrealistic and impractical, but it would eliminate thousands of good-paying jobs and cripple critical industries in our state and others across the country,” she said.
“Through carbon capture utilization and storage legislation like the FUTURE Act and the USE IT Act, my colleagues and I have already been working on realistic, practical, and bipartisan efforts that will lead to a better environmental and economic future. I will continue to move forward with these and other commonsense efforts instead of extreme and impractical ideas like the Green New Deal.”
Six Democratic candidates —Vermont’s Bernie Sanders, New York’s Kirsten Gillibrand, California’s Kamala Harris, Massachusetts’ Elizabeth Warren, New Jersey’s Cory Booker and Minnesota’s Amy Klobuchar — are co-sponsors of a similar bill.