You may have heard that we are in the midst of an election season. It is not just a congressional election cycle, but it is also a presidential election cycle as well.
Currently, the U.S. Senate is under a 53 to 47 Republican majority. There are 35 seats up for grabs in 2020, and Republicans currently hold 23 of those seats.
The U.S. House of Representatives is under a 235 to 197 Democratic majority. All 435 seats are up for grabs in 2020.
While there is still an overcrowded field of Democratic candidates for president, the field is slowly shrinking. As of press time, there are still 20 candidates vying to take on President Donald Trump in 2020. Six have dropped out of the race, including U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, former Gov. John Hickenlooper, Gov. Jay Inslee, Congressman Seth Moulton, former state Sen. Richard Ojeda and Congressman Eric Swalwell.
While these candidates have a variety of stances on just about every issue imaginable, here is what the frontrunners are saying about their climate change plans.
Perhaps the most ambitious, to put it nicely, plan to combat climate comes from U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, from Vermont, who would declare climate change a national emergency. His plan targets oil, coal and gas companies. The price tag is $16.3 trillion over 10 years, with $400 billion going to farmers for on-farm production changes.
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s plan to fight climate change includes lowering greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. The price tag is a hefty $1.7 trillion over 10 years.
U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, from Minnesota, would look to a past leader’s plans—President Barack Obama. Her plan focuses on carbon reduction and would cost $1 trillion.
U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, from California, says she will partner with farmers to develop “regenerative agricultural systems.” She is light on details when it comes to agriculture. Her plan will cost “$10 trillion in public and private funding.”
South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s plan focuses on “clean energy” while calling for net-zero emissions from agriculture by 2050. His plan costs between $1.5 and 2 trillion.
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, from New Jersey, is focusing on “economic inequality,” directing billions of dollars to low-income communities. He would establish the Environmental Justice Fund and restart the Civilian Conservation Corps. He would also overturn the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines approvals. In total, his plan costs over $3 trillion.
A key problem with many of these plans is that they would require congressional approval, which would be difficult to do, especially if the U.S. House of Representatives flips to Republican control.
Do you recall how the Green New Deal worked out? Well, it didn’t. That’s because it required congressional approval.
If all this election talk is boring you, don’t worry! Both the House and Senate will return to Washington this month.
Editor’s note: Seymour Klierly writes Washington Whispers for the Journal from inside the Beltway.