Yesterday, the House formally approved the new select committee on global warming discussed here several weeks ago as an important step towards quick passage of a strong plan.
The panel was created with bipartisan support, including 44 Republican votes.
But conservative leaders in the House didn’t want people to get the wrong idea, and think that Republicans are able to recognize reality and are serious about solving pressing problems.
So when naming members to the panel, as The Gristmill reports, they only picked one of the 50 people who actually voted for the panel. And they named their biggest climate change denier, James Sensenbrenner, to be the lead minority member. (Think Progress cataloged his greatest hits.)
They don’t have to numbers to block any formal recommendation (the committee won’t directly move legislation, but will make a high-profile recommendation to put pressure on existing committees.)
But count on the deniers to try to make mischief, sow division and impede progress.
However, with the right mix of mockery and dismissiveness, they will continue to be marginalized.
UPDATE: So much for saying something nice about a conservative. That one Republican who voted for the committee, and was still allowed to serve on it — Rep. Greg Walden — is also a “global warming skeptic” according to CongressDaily.
CongressDaily also reports:
Moderate Republican Reps. Wayne Gilchrest of Maryland and Christopher Shays of Connecticut — who campaigned for seats on the panel and have generally sided with Democrats on global warming and other environmental issues — were passed over.