Will they or won’t they?
White House officials are gearing up for a showdown over the Paris Agreement.
In a meeting reportedly scheduled for Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s team will debate whether to abandon the historic climate pact.
It might seem surprising that this is even up for debate. During the presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly pledged to “cancel” the agreement, which many consider necessary to keep the planet from overheating. But before making a move, it appears he’ll let his advisers fight it out.
Two members of Trump’s inner circle, Jared Kushner and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, want the administration to stick with the agreement. Reports say the meeting will pit those two against Steve Bannon, the climate-denying former chief of Breitbart News, and Scott Pruitt, the EPA administrator, who want out. Reports say Kushner and Tillerson argue that remaining in the Paris accord gives the administration diplomatic leverage in other matters.
If the opening skit on Saturday Night Live is any sign, the outlook for Kushner’s faction is good.
Of course, President Trump’s moves to trash the environment since taking office suggest that, whatever happens, the administration has no plans to meet the the carbon-cutting pledge the U.S. made under the Paris Agreement.
UPDATE, 18 Apr 2017: The meeting has been postponed. No word yet on rescheduling, but the White House is expected to announce its decision on whether to stay in the agreement in late May.