Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said Tuesday he plans to bring the “Green New Deal” up in the chamber, jarring Democrats who worry that a vote could expose a rift in the party about the proposal.
“I’ve noted with great interest the Green New Deal,” Mr. McConnell said. “We’re going to be voting on that in the Senate, we’ll give everybody an opportunity to go on record and see how they feel about the Green New Deal.”
Released last week by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D., Mass.), the Green New Deal is a wide-ranging proposal to end the dependence of the U.S. economy on fossil fuel resources within 10 years. Many Senate Democrats running for president, including Sens. Cory Booker (D., N.J.), Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.), Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) and Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) quickly signed onto the resolution, catapulting it into the national conversation.
Republicans have pilloried the Green New Deal, which also calls for guaranteeing every American a job and health care, as a “socialist fantasy.” Members of the GOP see the proposal as an opportunity to castigate the entire Democratic party as radical.
The vast majority of Congressional Democrats haven’t signed onto the plan, and scheduling a vote on the Green New Deal could also put Democratic divisions over the idea on unflattering display. Mr. Markey denounced a potential vote on the resolution, unaccompanied by hearings or expert testimony, as “sabotage” by Republicans.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.), who hasn’t endorsed the idea, said that Republicans should offer their own plan for climate change when asked about Mr. McConnell’s intent.
Sen. Chris Murphy (D., Conn.), one of the co-sponsors of the Green New Deal in the Senate, said that some senators may be concerned about closely affiliating with Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, a professed socialist and the author of the resolution in the House.
“Why would we be against creating a whole bunch of jobs and saving the planet from destruction? You don’t have to endorse everything the House author stands for economically by voting for the Green New Deal,” he said.
Write to Andrew Duehren at email@example.com.