How Democratic control of Congress will change committees, legislation on the environment

Hey look, more tea leaves. Salon is trying to figure out how the Democrat wins in Congress will affect legislation on the environment and starts off this article with a bold statement by Environmental Working Group president Ken Cook: "You'd have to go back to the Enlightenment to see such a big change in worldviews."
Salon only partly buys what Cook is saying, because the Dems don't hold a giant lead in both houses of Congress and President Bush still has a relatively unused veto pen in his pocket. But change is coming, no question. The best chance for serious change, Salon figures, is Barbara Boxer's move to the chairman position of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, replacing global-warming-is-a-"hoax" Republican James Inhofe. Boxer's view on climate change is, shall we say, a bit more reality-based. "Nowhere is there a greater threat to future generations than the disastrous effects of global warming," she said last week. "One of my top priorities will be to spotlight this issue ... with the goal of ultimately bringing legislation to the Senate floor."

With bipartisan support for ethanol, Salon has no trouble finding pro-agribusiness politicians on both sides of the entrance/exit: Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama both support corn-based ethanol, just like outgoing Republicans Jim Talent and Richard Pombo. We'll see if better methods of ethanol production can gain support in the 110th Congress.

Salon details many other changes in committee leaderships, and it's worth reading if you're the tea leaf type. I am. Tea is good for you.

[Source: Salon / Amanda Griscom Little]

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