Two new members of the Senate Democratic leadership team—Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar—are pushing the Environmental Protection Agency in separate directions as the agency works to complete its major regulation to cut carbon emissions from power plants.
Warren, who will act as a liaison to progressive groups for Senate leadership, wants the EPA rule to cut pollution more deeply. Meanwhile, Klobuchar—the incoming chair of the Senate Democratic Steering Committee—wants to slow down the process, saying the regulation imposes emissions-cutting mandates on states too quickly.
Both senators signed letters to EPA from separate coalitions of lawmakers this week. And while neither Warren nor Klobuchar signed the letters in their official leadership capacity, the dueling efforts nonetheless highlight competing goals in the Democratic ranks when it comes to the regulation at the heart of President Obama's climate agenda.
Warren joined 10 other generally liberal Democrats in a letter sent to EPA this week suggesting changes that "can, and should, achieve even greater emissions reductions." EPA's draft plan seeks to slash power plant emissions nationwide by 30 percent by 2030, with varying state-by-state mandates.