Climate Bill May Spur GOP Walkout in Ore. Statehouse – By Newsmax Staff (Newsmax) / Jan 15 2020
The GOP leader in the Oregon Senate said Wednesday there could be another walkout by Republicans over legislation aimed at stemming global warming.
“I’m still having conversations, but nothing is off the table,” Senate Minority Leader Herman Baertschiger, Jr., told reporters.
He said a draft bill is similar to one Democrats introduced in 2019 that resulted in a nine-day walkout by the minority Republicans last June, preventing a quorum in the Senate. The Republicans fled the state under threat of being arrested by the Oregon State Police to compel their return. They returned to the Oregon State Capitol only after Democrats announced the bill was dead because they lacked votes to independently pass the measure.
Like its predecessor, the draft bill would force big greenhouse gas emitters to obtain credits for each ton of gas they emit, and create an overall cap for emissions allowed in the state. Baertschiger claimed that if the bill passes as written, it would result in increased costs to the average family of $650 per year because of higher taxes on fossil fuels like natural gas, gasoline and diesel.
He suggested that instead of being put through the Legislature, where Democrats hold a supermajority in both the House and Senate, that lawmakers refer the issue to voters for the November ballot.