The U.S. House's approval of legislation making sweeping changes in America's energy policies is truly an historic action that brings our nation one giant step closer to a clean energy future that includes millions of new jobs, cleaner air for all of us to breathe, energy independence, and most importantly, a solution to the climate crisis that threatens our very way of life.
We salute the Illinois members of Congress who cast their vote today for economic recovery now, and for a cleaner, better world in the future. We will all benefit from these policies, but that did not make this an easy vote. The forces behind our old, dirty energy economy are very powerful, and the lobbying against these changes has been fierce. However, Representatives Bean, Davis, Guttierrez, Halvorson, Hare, Jackson, Kirk, Lipinski, Quigley, Rush, and Schakowsky stood up to the status quo today, and voted for big changes that will make Illinois a more prosperous, better place to live.
We also salute the leadership of President Obama and his administration in moving America toward a clean energy future. Obama and his team have set many powerful changes into motion to spur the transition to a clean energy economy, and his leadership was crucial to today's victor.
This legislation is a major leap forward for our country, but it is not perfect. We plan to work now with Senators Durbin and Burris to strengthen and pass the American Clean Energy Security Act, and get it to President Obama's desk for his signature in a form that maximizes the job creation and environmental benefits for all of us. There is much work ahead to do that, but tonight we celebrate a major victory for Illinois, our country, and our planet.