Senate Republicans want White House officials to testify on climate rule

Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee are calling for a hearing on President Obama's signature climate rule, and they want administration officials to testify.

Led by ranking member Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), seven other Republicans on the committee joined in pressuring Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) to hold a hearing on the Environmental Protection Agency rules.

The new standards mandate calls on existing power plants to cut back carbon pollution 30 percent by 2030.

"As our government sets in motion a litany of new actions with significant economic implications, we ask that you allow for Congressional oversight of federal policy decisions related to these attempts at controlling the climate," the letter states.

"If it’s such a great plan, bring it to Committee — let’s debate it, and vote on it," the letter adds.

The senators state that officials from the White House's Office of Science and Technology Policy and Council on Environmental Quality should be called on to testify at the hearing.

They also requested that EPA chief Gina McCarthy and acting administrator for the agencies Air and Radiation office, Janet McCabe, be asked to testify.

The witness list wouldn't end there. Republicans want to hear testimony from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Energy Information Administration and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation.

Republicans have decried the rules as harmful to the economy, and claim they will kill energy jobs.

The EPA has relentlessly defended its proposal since unveiling it earlier this month, and has said it will continue to engage states, industry and the public on the issue.

Signatories included Sens. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), John Boozman (R-Ark.) and Deb Fischer (R-Neb.).