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Sending a woman to do Manchin's job

"You just can't operate like that!"


Although it is certainly too early to pop the cork and pour out the bubbly, the political pipeline carrying Sen. Joe Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) dirty pipeline deal is springing leaks.

Yesterday, Manchin admitted that the aggressive arm-twisting of Joe Biden’s White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-N.Y.) is failing, with at least ten Democratic senators unwilling to go with the plan to attach his fossil fast-tracking agenda to the must-pass continuing resolution.

He told reporters that the only way the dirty resolution could get the needed 60 votes is if at least twenty Republicans were willing to go along. Furthermore, he said was relying on Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), who has nearly every Republican supporting her much more aggressive anti-environmental-review bill, to do the work to round up votes for his plan.

“That’s the only way it’s going to happen. She got 40-plus Republicans to join her. She’s just got to get 20 of them to follow her.”

Hoo! The little lady would like y’all to know that she is having none of that.

“Now the onus is on me to provide support for something I had no hand in and still don’t know what it is? You just can’t operate like that.”

Hans Nichols and Sophia Cai tell how Klain and other White House officials—including Office of Management and Budget director Shalanda Young, corporate-lobbyist-Biden-advisor Steve Ricchetti, and legislative affairs director Louisa Terrell—have been trying to convince Democratic lawmakers to vote for this Big Oil plan, to little avail.

House Natural Resources chair Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), now leading 80 members of the House in opposition to the dirty deal, bluntly dismissed the White House pressure:

“We understand the White House's consternation. Maybe they are upset about the fact that this has not been going as it was planned. The White House has to realize that there was no inclusion on the part of rank and file members,” he said. “That the issue of NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) is huge, and that many members are very protective about that.”

And on Friday afternoon, Green New Deal champion Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) joined Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in public opposition to Manchin’s plan:

I understand the importance of commitments that resulted in the historic IRA and recognize the ongoing conversation on fixing our permitting system. I've heard and share the concerns of my colleagues and allies about permitting provisions that could negatively impact communities.

As we discuss whether this package can reflect the values of environmental justice and a path forward, especially as anti-environment proposals are brought forth, we shouldn't attach the permitting overhaul package to the must-pass government funding legislation.

As it turns out, Members of Congress don’t like getting bulldozed any more than folks in Appalachia, Detroit, or the Gulf Coast do.

On Monday, 18-year-old Extinction Rebellion activist Shiva Rajbhandari was elected to the Boise school board, defeating a transphobic neo-fascist.

Yesterday, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, GSA Administrator Robin Carnahan, and Deputy National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi were in Toledo to announce DOT’s new Buy Clean policy for cleaner steel, concrete, asphalt, and glass, part of the Biden administration’s initiative to prioritize American-made, lower-carbon construction materials in federal procurement. The U.S. government is the largest purchaser in the world, so this is a pretty big deal.

Also on Thursday, White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy announced the administration’s plans to back floating-platform offshore wind projects along the Pacific coast.

In other good news, on Wednesday district judge Trudy White threw out the air permit for the gargantuan $9.4 billion Formosa Plastics fracked-gas petrochemical complex in St. James Parish, Louisiana at the center of Cancer Alley because “the state Department of Environmental Quality wrongly approved the permit without doing a full environmental justice analysis to see if the plant would disproportionately affect minority communities.”

Inspired by Sen. John Thune’s tireless advocacy for Keystone XL and Trump’s border wall and his attacks against “environmental extremism” and electric bicycles, and his recent endorsement of the Capito plan to gut the National Environmental Policy Act, the National Wildlife Federation has endorsed Thune for re-election.

This summer was the hottest in modern history, and probably in the history of human civilization.

In Baja, Dina Fine Maron on the effort to save the croaking totoaba. In Columbus, corrupt FirstEnergy CEO Steven Strah resigns amid a growing corruption scandal. In London and Birmingham, more than 50 climate protesters were sent to jail for their blockade of the Kingsbury oil terminal near Tamworth. “In total,” Matthew Taylor reports, “there are now 54 Just Stop Oil protesters in prison and since April, when the group began blocking oil terminals, there have been more than 1,350 arrests.”

JERBS, JERBS, JERBS: Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) is hiring a legislative correspondent for agriculture, energy, environment, and other issues (job #228265, application deadline 9/30). The Democratic staff of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee are seeking a full- or part-time paid press intern for the fall internship program from October 11 through December 23 (job #228243, application deadline 9/30).

Climate Action Campaign is seeking a director of state operations for their national field programs ($100K+, remote). The League of Conservation Voters is hiring a program director for Chispa Nevada, their Latino outreach program ($84.7K-$108K, Las Vegas).

The General Services Administration’s Public Building Service, which manages 370 million square feet of federal offices, is hiring a sustainability programs specialist ($94K-$122.6K, remote). American Council on Renewable Energy is looking for a senior public affairs manager for their Macro Grid Initiative. . Washington, DC. . ($110K-$125K, DC)

Climate Access is hiring a senior communication strategist ($65K-$70K, remote). Stand.Earth is hiring a communication director for their Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty Initiative ($85K-$110K, remote, preferably Global South).

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