OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Snowball thrown in Senate climate fight

A SENATOR WALKS ONTO THE SENATE FLOOR WITH A SNOWBALL: And throws it at a page. 

No joke.

"Do you know what this is? It's a snowball. And it's just from outside here. So it's very, very cold out. Very unseasonable," Sen. Jim InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeNegotiators kick off defense bill talks amid border wall, Iran debates House rejects GOP motion on replacing Pentagon funding used on border wall Republicans wary of US action on Iran MORE (R-Okla.) said. 

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So what does that incident have in common with terrorism? 

Well, not much really, but Inhofe wanted to illustrate a point: That climate change is not a greater threat to Americans than terror groups like the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. 

“His repeated failure to understand the real threat to our national security and his inability to establish a coherent national security strategy has put this nation at a level of risk that has been unknown for decades," said Inhofe, one of the Senate's staunchest climate skeptics, about President Obama.

To which White House spokesman Frank Benanati tweeted: "Just wow."

Read more here

OVERRIDE TIME: Sen. John HoevenJohn Henry HoevenBottom Line Poll: McConnell is most unpopular senator McConnell ups pressure on White House to get a budget deal MORE (R-N.D.) said he is working to get more Democrats on board with voting to override President Obama's veto of legislation to approve Keystone XL. Hoeven wouldn't identify which senators he is trying to sway but said he expects all 63 who voted to approve the project earlier this year will get behind the override movement. 

"We are still at 63, but we are working to see if there are others we can get and see if there is something we can do to encourage them," Hoeven said. 

Democratic Sens. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinClarence Thomas, Joe Manchin, Rudy Giuliani among guests at second state visit under Trump Schumer: I don't know any 'Democrat who agrees' with O'Rourke on gun seizures O'Rourke: Many Democrats 'complicit' in gun problem MORE (W.Va.), Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampThe Hill's Morning Report — Biden steadies in third debate as top tier remains the same Trump wins 60 percent approval in rural areas of key states Pence to push new NAFTA deal in visit to Iowa MORE (N.D.), Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerOvernight Defense: Trump hits Iranian central bank with sanctions | Trump meeting with Ukrainian leader at UN | Trump touts relationship with North Korea's Kim as 'best thing' for US Hillicon Valley: Zuckerberg courts critics on Capitol Hill | Amazon makes climate pledge | Senate panel approves 0M for state election security Zuckerberg woos Washington critics during visit MORE (Va.), Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillEx-CIA chief worries campaigns falling short on cybersecurity Ocasio-Cortez blasts NYT editor for suggesting Tlaib, Omar aren't representative of Midwest Trump nominees meet fiercest opposition from Warren, Sanders, Gillibrand MORE (Mo.), Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyEx-GOP congressman to lead group to protect Italian products from tariffs The Hill's Morning Report - Progressives, centrists clash in lively Democratic debate Democrats press Trump Treasury picks on donor disclosure guidelines MORE (Pa.), and Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyLobbying world Trump nominees meet fiercest opposition from Warren, Sanders, Gillibrand GOP frets over nightmare scenario for Senate primaries MORE (Ind.) all plan to vote to override the veto, according to Senate aides. But Democratic Sens. Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetThe Hill's Campaign Report: De Blasio drops out | Warren gains support from black voters | Sanders retools campaign team | Warning signs for Tillis in NC Williamson: Climate change result of an 'amoral' economic system Bennet: 'This generation has a lot to be really angry at us about' MORE (Colo), Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperInstead of raising the gas tax, stop wasting money on frivolous projects To stave off a recession, let's pass a transportation infrastructure bill Overnight Energy: Trump tweets he's revoking California's tailpipe waiver | Move comes as Trump visits state | California prepares for court fight | Climate activist Greta Thunberg urges lawmakers to listen to scientists MORE (Del.) and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterDemocratic senators quietly hope Biden wins over rivals GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson to resign at end of year Native American advocates question 2020 Democrats' commitment MORE (Mont.) have yet to say which way they will vote. Hoeven said he expects them to still back the pipeline.  

"Nobody has indicated at this point that they would change their position," Hoeven said.

Still, he admitted that he isn't betting on the override to succeed.

"I think it's more likely we are going to look to something like the highway bill and attaching it there. That's an infrastructure bill, this is about infrastructure. " Hoeven said. "We have strong support in the House. Obviously we have everybody on our side."

When pressed on comments made by John Podesta, recent adviser to Obama, that there is "no must-pass bill" that could convince the president to go against his policies, Hoeven said the highway bill would change his mind.

"There will be bills that the president is not going to veto," he said. "A six-year highway bill is something I believe we can do this year and we all want to do on both sides of the aisle. And I believe the president would sign it."

FRIDAY'S AGENDA:

The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s subpanel on the environment will hold a hearing to assess the unique needs of drinking water systems in rural and small communities. Lawmakers will hear from representatives of various small town governments as well as a Government Accountability Office official. 

Various experts and think tank officials will gather for an American Institute for Contemporary German Studies discussion on the geopolitics of energy. 

The Center for Strategic and International Studies will hold an event on the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) most recent mid-term oil market report. Antoine Halff, head of the IEA’s oil division, will present the report. 

NEWS BITE: Climatologist Judith Curry took to her blog to slam Rep. Raúl Grijalva’s (D-Ariz.) investigation of climate change skeptics as a witch hunt. 

“It looks like it is ‘open season’ on anyone who deviates even slightly from the consensus,” Curry wrote.

While Curry has agreed with many of the consensus conclusions on human-caused climate change, though not all, and that was enough to get on Grijalva’s radar for his investigation into the funding of climate-skeptic science. Curry said this is the first time she’s been attacked for her research, and that Georgia Tech, her employer, has a strong conflict-of-interest policy.

“I don’t think anything good will come of this,” she wrote, questioning Grijalva’s authority to investigate. “I anticipate that Grijalva will not find any kind of an undisclosed fossil fuel smoking gun from any of the 7 individuals under investigation.” 

AROUND THE WEB:

Major offshore drilling companies reported falling earnings and orders Thursday, Reuters reports

There are now 77 gray wolves in Oregon, an increase of 13 over last year, the Statesman Journal reports

Ninety-four percent of Californians think that the state’s current drought is serious, the Associated Press reports

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: 

Check out Thursday's stories... 

- Inhofe hurls snowball on Senate floor

- Dems introduce bill to help 'clean coal'

- Bipartisan Senate duo pushes for repeal of ethanol mandate

- Greens petition California to ban fracking

- Manufacturers: Even with costs halved, ozone reg could still be most expensive

- French president in Philippines for climate push

- East Coast saw 'unprecedented' sea level surge

 

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