To emphasize urgency, twenty eight U.S. Senators will talk all night long tonight on the Senate floor urging immediate action on climate change, according Senator Brian Schatz, event organizer. That is almost a third of the entire Senate.
The festivities will begin after the last votes today and is scheduled to last until approximately 9 am ET Tuesday, March 11.
So many Senators coming together for an all-night session shows our commitment to wake up Congress to the dangers of climate change.
– Sen. Barbara Boxer, Schatz press release, 3/7/2014
No Republicans are invited to the session.
The event will be held under the auspices of a new group of Democrats calling themselves the Senate Climate Action Task Force announced by California Sen. Barbara Boxer and Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse at a press conference on Jan. 13, 2014.
At the January kick-off, Senator after Senator spoke with great conviction on the dire need for immediate action to prevent catastrophic climate change. Certainly, those same sentiments will be repeated tonight.
The group has a big problem, though. Tonight’s event has no identifiable organization. It lacks:
- An agenda
- A list of speakers
- An action plan for the night
- Pre-published remarks for the Congressional Record
Apparently, Senators are just going to sit around and informally discuss climate change to promote public awareness of the problem. Any Senator who wants to speak will be allowed to say whatever they want.
What would be meaningful is for Senators to discuss concrete solutions, identify specific costs and craft functional legislation to address future climate change.
That won’t happen. Instead, it will likely degenerate into a bull session lamenting a lack of action as Senators slowly slip out the back door, one by one. They’ll probably badmouth Republicans as “deniers” beholden to big oil special interests before they go home.
Senator Boxer, the main force behind all climate change activity in the U.S. Senate, doesn’t even stay for climate change hearings held during the day by the U.S. Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works. That wouldn’t be so bad except she chairs the committee, calls for the hearings and sets the agenda!!
If Boxer can’t last through one of her own hearings it’s unlikely she or anyone else will last a whole night.
It’s refreshing that Senators are willing to take a strong stand on something, anything.
Unfortunately, what the United States needs more is for politicians to stand up for job creation, economic recovery and fixes to Obamacare.
Tonight’s event is nothing more than a staged publicity stunt.