House Republicans Voted Against the Environment More Than 500 Times in the Past Four Years

The House of Representatives will end its legislative session this week having recorded at least 234 votes against the environment in two years. According to a December 1, 2014 count by the minority staff on the Energy and Commerce committee, the House floor held 551 anti-environment votes over the four years since Republicans took control—including votes on bills and amendments that weakened Environmental Protection Agency regulations, opened lands to coal and oil, made changes to the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, approved the Keystone XL pipeline, and more. The report also includes times Republicans rejected pro-climate and environment amendments from Democrats. The EPA was the major target for the 113th Congress, with 145 votes to restrict EPA rulemaking and funding.

Since 2010, Democratic control of the Senate meant much of the GOP’s agenda had little chance of becoming law. That will change in January, and this report serves as one of the best previews of what the next Congress will plan for the environment. Both House Speaker John Boehner and incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have promised to renew legislation approving the Keystone pipeline, rolling back the EPA’s cap on carbon pollution from power plants, the ozone rule, and others.

Senate filibusters and President Barack Obama’s veto pen still stand in the way, but Republicans plan on using must-pass appropriations bills to raise the stakes of these negotiations.

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