In December, House Republicans attached poisonous riders on the Keystone XL pipeline and mercury-pollution rules to a tax-cut bill for working families. Senate Democrats killed the mercury rider, which would have blocked the so-called Boiler MACT rules, and President Obama rejected the tar sands pipeline after that rider was signed into law. Now the House GOP has new versions of the same poison pills, but Senate Democrats are fighting back. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) told reporters in the Capitol Tuesday that he opposes both poison pills:
Instead of finding commonsense solutions, the Republicans are talking about things that have nothing to do with middle-income taxes — like the Keystone pipeline, rolling back regulations to keep our air safe and our water clean and pure. These tactics are stalling — more evidence the Republicans don’t want to extend this tax cut. They talk about extending it but simply are unwilling to do anything to make it a reality.
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) agreed. “So we say to Speaker Boehner, instruct your conferees to drop the issue of Boiler MACT.”