You may have heard that today the Senate reached a compromise on CAFE: they will keep the 35mpg-by-2020 requirement, but drop the 4%-every-year-thereafter requirement. The loophole for SUVs will be closed. (Bizarrely, newly minted environmentalist Ted Stevens [R-Alaska] was instrumental in keeping the amendment alive.)

This is good news, in a symbolic sort of way (suffice to say, when there are working vehicles on the road that get 100mpg, we shouldn’t be satisfied with glacial, incremental gains). But it’s offset by the bad news that an amendment to levy around $30 billion in taxes on the oil industry, with the funds devoted to renewable energy, fell three votes short of the 60 votes necessary to overcome the threatened Republican filibuster.

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Yes, the Republicans threatened to filibuster in order to save the most profitable industry in the world, in history, from taxes. The fossil fuel lobby’s really getting its money’s worth!

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