Obama Pursuing Major Climate Deal without Congress
The Obama administration is working to bring about a major international climate change agreement, but the president will be circumventing Congress to do it.
According to the Constitution, the Senate is supposed to ratify international treaties.
In order to sidestep that requirement, The New York Times reports the White House is trying forge a sweeping "politically binding" agreement that would force nations to cut their fossil fuel emissions.
It's part of an attempt to fight what the Obama administration believes is man-made global warming.
"If you want a deal that includes all the major emitters, including the U.S., you cannot realistically pursue a legally binding treaty at this time," the Times quoted Paul Bledsoe, a former Clinton administration official who now works closely with the Obama White House on international climate change policy.
But the move is likely to anger Republicans in Congress, who have been accusing the president of abusing his authority by bypassing Congress.
"Unfortunately, this would be just another of many examples of the Obama administration's tendency to abide by laws that it likes and to disregard laws it doesn't like - and to ignore the elected representatives of the people when they don't agree," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said in a statement.