Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members

Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members
© Greg Nash

Leaders of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus are considering adding criteria to ensure new recruits are green enough to join, according to Bloomberg Environment.

Rep. Francis RooneyLaurence (Francis) Francis RooneyOvernight Energy: Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members| Green groups want freeze on Keystone construction| Bernhardt sworn in as Secretary of Interior Overnight Energy: Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members | Greens want freeze on Keystone construction | Bernhardt sworn in as Interior chief Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members MORE (R-Fla.) said he wants the caucus to consider including “commitment levels,” though he’s not sure how to measure a potential new member's dedication to the environment.

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“We’re going to try and call a caucus meeting, have a big discussion about the idea of commitment and if so how would it be defined,” the group's co-chairman told Bloomberg Environment.

The criteria could reportedly range from an acknowledgment of how humans affect global warming to a review of financial ties to the energy industry.

"The idea of a 'commitment criteria' has been discussed, but nothing has been settled yet," Jason Atterman, a spokesman for Rep. Ted DeutchTheodore (Ted) Eliot DeutchHouse ethics panel renews probes into three GOP lawmakers Overnight Energy: Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members| Green groups want freeze on Keystone construction| Bernhardt sworn in as Secretary of Interior Overnight Energy: Bipartisan climate caucus eyes litmus test for new members | Greens want freeze on Keystone construction | Bernhardt sworn in as Interior chief MORE (D-Fla.), a co-founder of the caucus, told The Hill. "Reps. Deutch and Rooney are continuing to meet on the caucus and determine the best way forward to ensure it is an effective caucus."

The Republican side of the caucus is lagging in numbers. The group was established in 2016 by Deutch and now-former Rep. Carlos CurbeloCarlos Luis CurbeloDisinvited GOP lawmaker turns up at Dem hearing Overnight Energy: 2020 rivals rip Biden over expected 'middle ground' climate plan | Dems cancel plans to invite Republican to testify on climate change | House passes .2B disaster aid bill over Trump objections Dems cancel plans to bring in Republican as climate change witness MORE (R-Fla.) with 45 members from each party, but the 2018 midterm elections proved particularly damaging for caucus Republicans.

Twenty-seven GOP members retired or were voted out, compared to just eight Democrats.