House Democrats narrowly won a key test vote Friday on sweeping legislation designed to combat global warming and usher in a new era of cleaner energy. Republicans said the bill included the largest tax increase in American history.
The vote was 217-205 to advance the White House-backed legislation to the floor, and 30 Democrats defected, a reflection of the controversy the bill sparked.
Interestingly, Democrats are selling the bill by saying it won't work. Since a cap-and-trade scheme can only succeed if it changes consumer consumption patters, it must impose costs on consumers to work. But...
"The bill contains provisions to protect consumers, keep costs low, help sensitive industries transition to a clean energy economy and promote domestic emission reduction efforts," the White House in a statement of support for the legislation.
Next stop, Senate, where the bill has even more of an uphill climb.
Update: Final tally on the main vote was 219-212. Of course absolutely no one who voted "yea" has any idea what they voted for, since no one can even produce a copy of the bill, much less attest that he or she read it.