I caught up with Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) following a House Natural Resources Committee hearing yesterday, and asked him how big a priority it was to keep a potential rider blocking the Interior Department’s proposed rule to protect streams from coal mining out of the “omnibus” funding bill.
Grijalva, the committee’s ranking member, said it “should be a big priority.”
And then he added this:
“We should be getting more indications from the White House as to their opposition to some of these things [riders]. And I hope collectively that the caucus comes to the realization that it’s not only that—the stream issue—but other items that are going to be riders that are going to begin to undo some of these bedrock environmental laws.”
Later, Grijalva again expressed frustration with the low “level of concern” coming out of the White House on the stream protection and other potential environmental riders.
The White House has said it is opposed to any policy riders, even while some Democrats have said a few riders will probably be in the bill. The omnibus negotiations remain fluid, with Congress expected to pass a bill tomorrow to allow five more days for negotiations.
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