10 page Policy Paper

10 page Policy Paper - CAF standards have become a very...

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CAFÉ standards have become a very active debate in Washington due to increased voter concern on the issue of global warming. These standards have not been modified since 1975, and are long overdue to be changed with the critical problem rising with foreign oil along with the effect it is having on the environment. With pressure mounting from worried voters, politicians and representatives have been urged to pass legislation and start the policy process to help reverse the effects of global warming. With the Senate already set on a piece of legislation, the House is leaning towards the highly debated and much more lenient bipartisan Hill-Terry bill. However, agreement between the two houses of Congress will be hard to come by and disagreement with current president George W. Bush will make it even harder for increased CAFÉ standards to go into law in the near future. The policy process is a difficult, but affective way to make sure legitimate legislation is passed into law. The Senate and the House of Representatives are both allowed to pass separate bills, but in the end must decide on a single bill to be sent to the President to sign into law. The Senate Energy Bill (H.R. 6) was passed in the Senate with an overwhelming approval of 65-27 in favor of the bill. 43 Democrats, 20 Republicans, and 2 Independents supported the passage of the bill while 4 Democrats and 23 Republicans voted against it (“The New Senate Energy Bill- CAFÉ… Oh My!”). The Senate Energy Bill is highly supported by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and also Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who are both members of the Democrat party. The CAFÉ standards through the Senate Energy Bill would be increased to 35 miles per gallon by 2020 for all types of cars and
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light trucks (Ratnam). It would therefore call for an increase in current standards by 40%, which is a large percentage automakers and car companies are strongly against (Shepardson-“Sixty House members…bill”). With the Senate already passing legislation, the House must now respond by passing a separate bill. The most popular piece of legislation being lobbied through the House of Representatives is the Hill-Terry bill that is sponsored by house representatives Baron Hill D-IN, and Lee Terry R-NE. Through this bill, CAFÉ standards would increase anywhere from 32 mpg to 35 mpg by the year 2022 (Terry). This House bill is unique in that it has the backing of major interest groups like the car companies Ford and General Motors. What car industries love about the Hill- Terry bill is that cars are placed into separate categories by weight instead of all being grouped together. Another benefit to motor industries would be the $85 billion and 17,000 small car production jobs it would save if the bill went into effect according to Michigan Senator Carl Levin (Shepardson-“Levin Fights… changes”). What angers the opposition to the Hill-Terry bill is that the policy has included a clause that allows the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
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This note was uploaded on 04/29/2008 for the course POL 001 taught by Professor Huckfeldt during the Fall '08 term at UC Davis.

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10 page Policy Paper - CAF standards have become a very...

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