Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Progressive Breakfast: As Judges Debate Climate Policy, Lives Hang In the Balance


The Clean Power Plan, President Barack Obama’s effort to cap carbon emissions from dirty power plants, came before the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday ... As lawyers and judges debate the finer points of constitutional executive authority and statutory interpretation, we must not forget that the climate crisis is already putting lives of real people at risk, particularly in low income communities, and communities of color. Activists from People’s Action Institute were in Washington yesterday to send that message.


Tougher questions for conservative challengers at federal appellate court. USA Today: “The lengthy debate, while technical and at times inscrutable, pointed slightly in the government’s favor for several reasons: Six of the 10 judges were named by Obama or his Democratic predecessor, Bill Clinton, and most sharply questioned state and industry opponents. One Republican appointee, Thomas Griffith, said the new rule calls for only minor reductions in coal-fired plant emissions.”
But EPA pressed on specifics. WSJ: “The judges focused much of their questioning on whether the EPA had overstepped its legal authority by seeking to broadly compel this shift away from coal … The states and companies suing the EPA argue the agency doesn’t have the authority to regulate anything outside of a power plant itself … Judge Patricia Millett, appointed by Mr. Obama, expressed concern that the administration was in effect requiring power plants to subsidize companies competing with them for electricity demand.”


Sanders stumps with Clinton today to help woo young voters. Bloomberg: “…while Sanders may now stand behind the Democratic presidential nominee, not all his supporters have followed, which may explain why Clinton has invited Sanders to appear by her side Wednesday when she discusses college affordability on the campus of the University of New Hampshire … The youth vote was one of the pillars of the Obama coalition. But thus far it’s proven perhaps the most difficult one for Clinton to rebuild.”
“Young Voters Love Gary Johnson — For All the Wrong Reasons” writes American Prospect’s Harold Meyerson: “… Johnson supports the legalization of marijuana—way cool. Less cool is his position on climate change. Although he acknowledges that it is both real and at least partly man-made, he believes government should take no action against it … Then there’s Johnson’s position on what government can do to make college more affordable … Or, more accurately, the absence of a position. He doesn’t have one…”
Dems turn fire on Gary Johnson. The Hill: “Liberal groups are passing around embarrassing videos of Johnson and running ads against him warning about his positions on issues like climate change that are important to young voters and independents.”
Johnson makes pitch in NYT oped: “People might call us fiscal conservatives. Like most Americans, I believe that government does too much and costs too much … Some would call us social liberals. I’ve been vocal in criticizing the disparity in the treatment of black Americans by the police.”


Wells Fargo CEO to forgo $41M. AP: “The independent directors at the nation’s second-largest bank said Tuesday that Stumpf will forfeit $41 million in stock awards, while former retail banking executive Carrie Tolstedt will forfeit $19 million of her stock awards, effective immediately. Both are also giving up any bonuses for 2016, and Tolstedt will not receive any severance or any other compensation in connection with her retirement …”


Deal struck to keep government open, aid Flint. The Hill: “While this deal would not add Flint money to the government-spending measure, it would increase the odds of Flint funds being dealt with in the lame-duck, post-election session as lawmakers deal with Water Resources Development Act … The government would shut down on Saturday without a new funding measure … The upper and lower chambers also would still need to reconcile their two bills.”
More austerity for Greece. NYT: “Greek lawmakers approved a new set of austerity measures Tuesday evening, including further trims in pensions and the transfer of major state assets to a new privatization fund to be overseen by the country’s creditors … [PM Alexis] Tsipras’s increasingly unpopular government is hoping that the beginning of debt negotiations will raise its political fortunes.”

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