Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Wednesday | March 19, 2003

No drilling in ANWR for now

We won't have very many of these victories, so savor it: the Senate, voting on an amendment offered by Sen. Boxer, killed Bush's plan to drill in the Artic National Wildlife Preserve.

Ted Stevens (AK), the measure's biggest Senate champion, was out of control:

"People who vote against this today are voting against me and I will not forget," he declared, appearing to aim his remarks at Boxer in particular but also to wavering GOP senators.

"When one of the most powerful senators says he takes it personally, and he's keeping a list. ... Well, my heart really started to beat faster," Boxer later remarked in an interview.

Five Democrats voted for drilling:
John Breaux (LA)
Mary Landrieu (LA)
Daniel Akaka (HI)
Daniel Inouye (HI)
Zell Miller (GA)
The two Louisiana senators faced intense pressure from the Teamster's Union, which was under the belief drilling would create something ridiculous like 800,000 jobs. The Hawaii senators voted in solidarity with native Alaskan tribes that hoped to profit from drilling. Miller is, well, a Republican.

Notably absent from this list was Sen. Pryor of Arkansas, who as a conservative Dem was seen as a swing vote.

On the other side, eight Republicans voted against drilling and are now on Steven's little black list:

Susan Collins (ME)
Olympia Snowe (ME)
Lincoln Chafee (RI)
Gordon Smith (OR)
Mike DeWine (OH)
Peter Fitzgerald (IL)
John McCain (AZ)
Norm Coleman (MN)
The Maine senators are as moderate as they come. Chaffee is a Democrat. Fitzgerald is already toast in IL, so I'm not sure why he just didn't give his constituents the middle finger. McCain has to vote these ways to maintain his "maverick" status. Coleman made this issue a centerpiece of his campaign. And Smith represents Oregon, where even the Republicans are green.

The best part? The issue is dead in this Congress.

Posted March 19, 2003 04:48 PM | Comments (19)


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