Senate to Vote on Murkowski EPA Block Today

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The Senate is debating the measure from Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) that would block the Environmental Protection Agency’s conclusion that greenhouse gas emissions threaten public health.

So far, a number of Democrats whose votes were in question have come forward and said they would vote against it. Jim Webb (D-Va.) just said in a statement that he would vote against it. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Mark Begich (D-Alaska) yesterday indicated that they are likely to vote against it as well.

But there are still four Democrats likely to vote for it: Sens. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, and Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia. Lincoln just gave a speech on the floor declaring that “Congress, not unelected bureaucrats, should be making the decisions.”

The majority of Democrats, however, are opposing the measure. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), speaking for the majority, called the move to block an agency’s scientific conclusion “unprecedented.” “We have no right to do this,” said Boxer. “What we going to do next, repeal the law of gravity?”

Debate limited to six hours, so it will likely end with a vote somewhere around 3:30 p.m. EST. It needs only a simple majority to pass. Right now it looks like Murkowski has at least 42 votes. It probably won’t pass, but it could be a close one. I’m live-Tweeting the debate, which you can follow below:

More MotherJones reporting on Climate Desk

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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