Bingaman optimistic about cap-and-trade in the Senate

Jeff Bingaman (D - NM) is one of the most soft-spoken U.S. Senators, but also one of the most senior and influential. The chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is also a thoroughly good guy - I worked for him once upon a time and was very impressed by both his intellect and his integrity.

He's obviously a key player in getting both cap-and-trade and energy legislation through the Senate, and according to this interview with Politico, he thinks the votes are there:
Bingaman: People need to understand that we can enact a system which will not unduly burden anyone, but will put us on a track to reducing greenhouse gas emissions over the next seven decades. Clearly, there’s always some that are never going to be persuaded, and there’s some that don’t even think global warming is a problem. But most people here in the Senate believe the issue is real. They believe action is appropriate to put a price on carbon.

Politico: Do you think 60 people believe that?

Bingaman: I think so.
Later in the interview he tactfully acknowledges the obstacles posed by related legislation (both his energy bill, which Majority Leader Harry Reid wants to package with cap-and-trade, and healthcare), but sees "a lot of desire to move ahead."

While we're on the topic of Congressmen from New Mexico, Democratic freshman Harry Teague may be first in the line of fire from Republicans for his "Yes" vote to Waxman-Markey.

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