Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Boucher to C-Span: I want more changes to climate bill

Virginia Democrat Rick Boucher, who has now been identified as the front man for the electric power lobby, says he’ll vote for the compromise version of the Waxman-Markey bill that he helped negotiate.

But Boucher vows he will push for additional changes in the bill as it moves forward in the legislative process.

In an interview broadcast this morning by C-Span, Boucher said “further improvements” are needed in the legislation. (This echoes language used by EEI President Tom Kuhn in a May 18 email, in which he noted that Boucher was the “staunch ally” of the electric power industry in this debate. Kuhn bragged that, through its use of Boucher, the electric power lobby had already achieved many of its objectives in weakening the bill. But that it wanted further changes to delay cleanup and give further huge financial value to the power industry.)

Boucher said he would vote at the committee level for the bill as it now stands. But he added that “I intend to be a key participant in this process” as it moves to the House floor and to an ultimate conference committee with the Senate. Boucher noted that he would work “to make sure the further needed improvements” are included in any final version.

Meanwhile, we’ll keep an eye on power industry checks rolling into Boucher’s office. He’s giving the power lobby good value so far.

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