Energy & Environment

Clinton open to ‘conversation’ on carbon tax

Hillary Clinton is open to working with lawmakers on a tax on carbon dioxide emissions if Congress wants it, her energy adviser said.

Despite repeated pressure from Bernie Sanders and a carbon pricing endorsement in the party's platform, Clinton has not yet committed to pursuing a tax.

The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee still isn't rushing to endorse the idea. Trevor Houser, Clinton's energy adviser, said that with Republicans controlling Congress, it's better to focus on executive actions, like her pledge to build on President Obama's Clean Power Plan.

"Democrats believe that climate change is too important to wait for climate deniers in Congress to start listening to science," Houser said Tuesday at a Washington Post event coinciding with the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.

"And while it's always important to remain open to a conversation about how to address this issue with Congress, we need a plan that we can implement day one, because it's too important to wait, and we need to focus on those things as well."

Houser went on to say that if Congress wants to take action on carbon tax, Clinton would listen.

"I'm sure that if Congress wants to have a conversation about addressing climate change, Secretary Clinton would be delighted to have that conversation," he said.

It's doubtful that Congress would do that during Clinton's presidency. The House voted in June to condemn a carbon tax as "detrimental to American families and businesses" - with all Republicans agreeing - and Republicans are heavily favored to retain the House majority in this year's election.

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