December 21, 2005
CSPAN Might Actually Be Exciting Wednesday
Having failed to win passage of Arctic drilling through the Budget process,
Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK) has inserted his proposal to open up the Arctic
Refuge in the Defense spending bill. Stevens is holding the wildly popular
DOD approps bill hostage in order to force his controversial drilling
legislation through Congress.
A growing cadre of Senators has voiced objection to Stevens latest gambit.
Because Arctic drilling was not part of the DOD bill sent over from the
House, nor the bill passed by the Senate, the measure is "outside the scope
of the conference" under senate Rules. On Wednesday, Senators Cantwell,
Reid, Kerry, Durbin, Lieberman and others will raise a point of order
against the Stevens drilling provision. The parliamentarian will agree
that Arctic is non- germane and then Stevens will have to win a vote to
overturn the ruling of the Chair. He will have to secure 51 votes, or a
majority of those present to prevail. Already 47 senators have lent their
name to a letter objecting to Stevens abuse of senate rules including 5
If Stevens wins a vote to overturn the Senate rules and keep Arctic
drilling part of the DOD approps bill, drilling opponents have committed
to filibuster the legislation and force Stevens back to conference to strip
the provision before a final DOD funding bill passes the Senate. The onus
is on Stevens to produce 60 votes to support his overturn of the Senate
rules. Despite the nervousness about the idea of filibustering this
important bill, this is a vote we can win!
Tell Senators Durbin and Obama to Stay Strong!
Please urge them to:
1. support efforts to strip this language from the Defense Funding bill and
2. filibuster the legislation if necessary to ensure that Arctic drilling
does not become law.
Connect to their offices by calling 1-888-8-WILDAK