“The Obama administration is working to forge a sweeping international climate change agreement to compel nations to cut their planet-warming fossil fuel emissions, but without ratification from Congress,” Coral Davenport reports in the New York Times.
Were you surprised? In domestic climate policy, Team Obama routinely flouts the separation of powers. Their M.O. from day one has been to ‘enact’ regulatory requirements that, if proposed in legislation, would be dead on arrival.
During this year and next, climate negotiators are again trying to work out a successor treaty to the Kyoto Protocol, which expired at the end of 2012. Under the U.S. Constitution, a treaty enters into force only if ratified, and ratification requires the approval of “two-thirds of Senators present.”
Although Democrats control the Senate, a ratification vote on Kyoto II would fail if held today. With Republicans expected to pick up Senate seats in November, the constitutional path to a new climate treaty seems hopelessly blocked.
So, according to Davenport, the Obama administration plans to negotiate an agreement that is not a treaty yet binding in effect…