McConnell says Senate will vote on Democrats’ ‘Green New Deal’

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez waves to the crowd after speaking at Women's Unity Rally in Lower Manhattan in New York. Democrats including Ocasio Cortez of New York and veteran Sen. Ed Markey of Mass.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced Tuesday that he wants the Senate to vote on a massive plan to fight climate change.

The initiative was unveiled by Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a rising political star, and Senator Edward Markey. Independent Senator Bernie Sanders co-sponsored the deal but has not said definitively whether he will run in 2020.

"Give everybody an opportunity to go on record and see how they feel about the Green New Deal", McConnell told reporters at a press conference on Capitol Hill.

It's no wonder McConnell seemed uncharacteristically gleeful when he said he'd be bringing the Green New Deal to the Senate for a vote.

He offered no date for the vote.

At a rally Monday night in El Paso, Trump mocked the Green New Deal, saying, "It sounds like a high school term paper that got a low mark".

"H$3 e's banking on people not being courageous", Ocasio-Cortez told the Washington Post. "The Green New Deal needs to be put into action immediately ... doesn't it?" It calls for an upgrade to infrastructure, building resiliency to climate change-related natural disasters and working with farmers to reduce emissions.

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The proposal includes progressive agenda items like universal healthcare and a federal jobs guarantee.

"Broadly speaking, a vote on the resolution will do little more for Republicans than further elevate an issue on which they're deeply at odds with public opinion".

It's hard to say whether McConnell will be successful in his bid to rattle Democrats on the fence about a resolution that promises so much so quickly.

Have rising sea levels and worsening forest fires convinced the Republican leader to reassess his position on climate change? House Speaker Nancy Pelosi derisively referred to the House version of the bill as a "green dream", while only 11 of the 47 senators who caucus with the Democrats have signed on to sponsor the bill. The GOP-controlled Senate scheduled a symbolic vote on single-payer health care legislation in 2017, a decision also created to put Democrats on the spot, and in January brought up foreign policy legislation that took on the boycott movement against Israel.

McConnell and the GOP "are terrified of this winning vision of a just and prosperous future, " he said, adding that McConnell "thinks he can end all debate on the Green New Deal now and stop this freight train of momentum". But Democrats didn't take the bait and voted "present" instead.

"It is so interesting to watch this very hard left turn the Democrat Party has taken, and it's also interesting to watch all of these Democrat presidential candidates rubber-stamp this Green New Deal", Sen.

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