Obama threatens to veto energy spending bill
The Obama administration on Thursday came out strongly against an energy spending bill in the Senate, arguing that it favors the Energy Department’s bomb-making over its clean energy programs.
The energy and water spending bill, however, failed to clear a key procedural vote, 49-47, with Democrats prevailing in blocking Republicans’ push to bring the measure to the floor for a vote.
It is unknown when Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will try again. The bill would fund the Energy Department through the end of the next fiscal year as well as the water programs under the purview of other government agencies.
“Although the bill supports key national security items, the bill drastically underfunds critical investments that develop American energy sources to build a clean and secure energy future,” the formal veto threat issued by the White House reads. The spending bill would hinder the commercialization of these “emerging technologies” and the “high-quality jobs” that come with their development.
The bill also blocks the ability of the country to strengthen its “economic competitiveness; and improve resilience against current and ongoing climate impacts that threaten our economy, public health, and natural resources,” the White House says.
The administration says the bill would undercut the Energy Department’s renewable energy programs by nearly $1 billion, setting fiscal 2016 spending at $1.9 billion instead of the requested $2.7 billion.