The House approved an amendment to legislation Friday that would prevent the White House from imposing a carbon tax without congressional approval.
The lower chamber agreed to Rep. Steve Scalise’s (R-La.) amendment by a 237-176 vote, with 12 Democrats crossing the aisle to support it.
The amendment was added to an underlying bill that would require Congress to OK regulations that carry a $100 million economic impact or greater. That bill is dead in its tracks in the Democratic-controlled Senate, and the White House has threatened to veto it.
Scalise’s measure doesn’t have much of a practical implication, as Congress — not the executive branch — is tasked with approving new taxes.
It does, however, put many Democratic lawmakers on record as supporting a carbon tax. The carbon tax concept has riled many conservatives, and many are trying to make sure it doesn't gain traction.
Republicans say a carbon tax would stunt the economy by raising energy prices on fossil fuel-fired power — chiefly, coal.
Some conservative think tanks and green groups have floated the idea as a way to curb emissions while also generating enough revenues to offset lower personal tax rates.
Instead of trying to fix problems, the House of Representatives is getting ready for the next election.