Vulnerable Senate Dems get hit on natural gas exports

Reps. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerTrump makes Manchin top target for midterms Wyden: I object to Trump’s DHS cyber nomination over demands for Stingray information Trump’s confirmation chaos in perspective MORE (R-Colo.) are capitalizing on legislation the House approved this week in their Senate campaigns.

The two congressmen ganged up on Democratic incumbents Sen. Mary LandrieuMary Loretta LandrieuLandrieu dynasty faces a pause in Louisiana Senate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation Project Veritas at risk of losing fundraising license in New York, AG warns MORE (La.) and Mark UdallMark Emery UdallSenate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation Democratic primary could upend bid for Colorado seat Picking 2018 candidates pits McConnell vs. GOP groups MORE (Colo.) over liquified natural gas (LNG) exports Thursday after the House passed Gardner's legislation to speed up export applications.

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Cassidy and Gardner issued a statement pressuring Landrieu and Udall to act on gas exports in the Senate.

Udall has proposed legislation similar to  Gardner's in the Senate, but his places a 45-day deadline on the Energy Department to approve export applications where Gardner's bill imposes 30 days.

"Senator Udall should capitalize on his new-found friendship with Chairwoman Landrieu and pressure Majority Leader Reid to bring our bipartisan LNG exports bill up for a vote in the Senate,” Gardner said in a statement Thursday.

Gardner added: "Relying on their supposed clout, Senators Udall and Landrieu shouldn't have any trouble convincing [Senate Majority Leader] Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidMcConnell not yet ready to change rules for Trump nominees The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by CVS Health — Trump’s love-hate relationship with the Senate Trump to press GOP on changing Senate rules MORE [D-Nev.] to hold a vote, especially considering our legislation received the support of House Democratic leadership."

Landrieu said last week that she is working with Udall to hold a vote on his bill in the Senate Energy and Natural Resource Committee, which she chairs, but the chances of it reaching the full chamber are slim.

Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGOP, Dem lawmakers come together for McCain documentary Dem rep to launch discharge petition to force net neutrality vote in House Hillicon Valley: Senate votes to save net neutrality | Senate panel breaks with House, says Russia favored Trump in 2016 | Latest from Cambridge Analytica whistleblower | Lawmakers push back on helping Chinese tech giant MORE (R-Alaska), who is ranking member on the committee, told The Hill Thursday that there is a possibly the committee will mark up Udall's bill after the July 4, recess. She added, however, that the committee has yet to hold a hearing on Udall's legislation.

If Landrieu is unable to schedule a committee vote in the little time that is left before November, it may hurt her politically, especially with Cassidy turning the pressure up.

"Harry Reid could and should stop the blockade of this legislation so that there is a full Senate vote, but he's letting Senator Landrieu and Senate Democrats play for press releases," Cassidy said in a statement.

For her part, Landrieu has distanced herself from President Obama's climate agenda as much as possible, stating time and time again that she agrees with little if any of his energy policies.

The two Senate races will be critical to determining which party controls the Senate next year.