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 InhofePentagon releases report on sexual assault risk Trump privately calls Mattis ‘Moderate Dog’: report Cruz gets help from Senate GOP in face of serious challenge from O’Rourke 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 HoevenOvernight Energy: Trump Cabinet officials head west | Zinke says California fires are not 'a debate about climate change' | Perry tours North Dakota coal mine | EPA chief meets industry leaders in Iowa to discuss ethanol mandate 74 protesters charged at Capitol in protest of Kavanaugh Big Oil’s carbon capture tax credit betrayal 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) ManchinThis week: Kavanaugh nomination thrown into further chaos GOP plays defense on ObamaCare’s pre-existing conditions Doug Jones to McConnell: Don't 'plow right through' with Kavanaugh MORE (W.Va.), Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampHeitkamp highlights anti-human trafficking bill in new ad Midterm polling data favors Democrats — in moderation This week: Kavanaugh nomination thrown into further chaos MORE (N.D.), Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerKey House Dem's objections stall intel bill as deadline looms Russia docs order sets Trump on collision with intel community Hillicon Valley: North Korean IT firm hit with sanctions | Zuckerberg says Facebook better prepared for midterms | Big win for privacy advocates in Europe | Bezos launches B fund to help children, homeless MORE (Va.), Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillDisclosures suggest rebates and insurers responsible for rising out-of-pocket drug costs Midterm polling data favors Democrats — in moderation Nelson campaign to donate K from Al Franken group to charity MORE (Mo.), Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyMalnutrition Awareness Week spotlights the importance of national nutrition programs Poll: Democrats hold big leads in Pennsylvania Senate, governor races The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by United Against Nuclear Iran — Kavanaugh, accuser say they’re prepared to testify MORE (Pa.), and Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyThis week: Kavanaugh nomination thrown into further chaos Doug Jones to McConnell: Don't 'plow right through' with Kavanaugh The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh MORE (Ind.) all plan to vote to override the veto, according to Senate aides. But Democratic Sens. Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetOvernight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens Bipartisan senators unveil proposal to crack down on surprise medical bills Multiple NFL players continue on-field protests during national anthem MORE (Colo), Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperTrump Jr. to Dem Senator: 'You admitted to hitting your wife so hard it gave her a black eye!' Melania Trump's spokeswoman gets Hatch Act warning for #MAGA tweet EPA to abandon restrictions against chemical linked to climate change MORE (Del.) and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterDems offer resolution to force vote to overturn IRS guidance limiting donor disclosure Nelson campaign to donate K from Al Franken group to charity Montana lawmakers cheer recommendation to ban mining north of Yellowstone 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

 

Please send tips and comments to Laura Barron-Lopez, laurab@thehill.com, and Timothy Cama, tcama@thehill.comFollow us on Twitter: @thehill, @lbarronlopez, @Timothy_Cama