1988 Scorecard Vote
In late 1987, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed a comprehensive bill to strengthen the Clean Air Act with provisions to control acid rain, toxic air pollutants, and urban smog in cities which are failing to meet current air quality standards. The bill, originally sponsored by Sen. George Mitchell (D-ME), mandates a 12 million ton reduction in sulfur dioxide emissions by the year 2000 (about a 50% cut), and a 4 million ton reduction in nitrogen oxide emissions by 1996. These are the main pollutants causing acid rain, which causes such widespread damage to our lakes, rivers, crops, forests, and soil.
But the Senate Majority Leader, Robert Byrd (D-WV) has refused to bring the bill to the Senate floor for a vote. Senators Burdick (D-ND) and Stafford (R-VT) have been gathering signatures for a letter sent to the Majority Leader and the Minority Leader, Senator Robert Dole (R-KS) urging them to promptly schedule a vote on this bill. As of September 15, 1988, forty-nine Senators have now signed the letter, including Minority Leader Robert Dole. This signature is counted as a pro-environmental position.