Enron Mail

Subject:Shift May Empower California.htm
Date:Thu, 24 May 2001 11:47:43 -0700 (PDT)

Thanks for taking time to call yesterday. Good luck with the Lockyer situ=
ation. I truly do believe that direct and prompt interaction with Lockyer=
will prove more effective for Enron than delayed or intermediated action.=
As we discussed, if I can be of any help with reconnaissance or as sou=
nding board, just let me know.
I have attached an article from this morning's LA Times. It provides an C=
alifornia view on how the shakeup in the Senate might impact the state's e=
nergy situation. Certainly, by the time that President Bush visits the C=
alifornia in a few days, the state's two Democratic US Senators will be a =
good bit more empowered.

[IMAGE] [IMAGE][IMAGE] =09Click here to learn more! [IMAGE]=09

[IMAGE] =09Home | Discussions | Print Edition | Archives | Site Map =
| Home Delivery | Advertise | Feedback | Help [IMAGE]=09

[IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] News Politics Entertainment music ,=
movies , art , TV , restaurants [IMAGE] Business Travel Marketplace jo=
bs , homes , cars , rentals , classifieds [IMAGE] Sports Commentary Shop=
[IMAGE] [IMAGE] TOP STORIES * State's Standardized Test Spurs Scatte=
red Backlash * GOP Braces for Jeffords to Bolt Today * Moderates on =
TE FOR THIS SECTION 5/24 | 5/23 | 5/22 | 5/21 | 5/20 | 5/19 | 5/18 =
[IMAGE] DAILY SECTIONS Front Page "A" Section California [=
IMAGE] Business Sports Calendar [IMAGE] So. Cal. Living Editorials,Lett=
ers, Op/Ed WEEKLY SECTIONS Health Food [IMAGE] Tech Times [IMAG=
E] Highway 1 SUNDAY SECTIONS Book Review Opinion Real Estate [IMA=
GE] Calendar Magazine Travel [IMAGE] TV Times Work Place [IMAGE] [=
IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] Marketplace Find a home , car =
, rental , job , pet , merchandise , boat, plane or RV , classifieds Pl=
ace an Ad [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] L.A. Times =
Subscription Services Subscribe , Change of Address , Vacation Stops , =
Suspend Delivery , College Discount , Gift Subscriptions , Mail Subscriptio=
from the Newspaper See this week's ads [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] Pri=
nt Edition , Orange County , Valley , Ventura County , National , Communi=
ty Papers [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] Books Columnists Cross=
word Education Food Health Highway Horoscope Lottery Magazine =
Obituaries Reading by Real Estate Religion Science So.Cal. Living =
Special Reports Sunday Opinion Tech Times Times Poll Traffic Weath=
] Search Products Stores [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] [IMAGE] =
[IMAGE] [IMAGE] =09[IMAGE]=09[IMAGE] Thursday, May 24, 2001 | [IMAGE]Print=
this story [IMAGE] [IMAGE] Shift May Empower California By RICHARD SI=
effords has never mattered much to Californians. Until now. The Verm=
ont senator's widely anticipated decision to abandon his fellow Republican=
s and put Democrats in control of the Senate could have big implications f=
or California, particularly on energy and environmental policy, lawmakers =
and lobbyists said Wednesday. The change, which Jeffords is expected=
to announce today, could increase political pressure on the Bush adminis=
tration to respond more aggressively to California's electricity crisis, t=
hese insiders said. And it might force the White House to compromise=
on key elements of the national energy policy it unveiled last week. In f=
act, the administration's proposed budget cuts for programs to promote ren=
ewable energy were said to be a factor in Jeffords' decision. At th=
e very least, Senate observers said, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) is l=
ikely to get the floor vote she has sought on price controls for wholesale=
electricity. That doesn't necessarily mean that the administration'=
s critics will be able to have everything their way. Even if the Senate ap=
proves electricity price caps, for example, the measure would face stiff o=
pposition in the GOP-dominated House--and a likely veto if it made it to t=
he president's desk. Still, a Democratic majority in the Senate wou=
ld give Feinstein and other party members a platform to turn up the politi=
cal heat on the administration and congressional Republicans on energy pol=
icy. "It kicks up the dust," groaned one energy industry lobbyist wh=
o requested anonymity. Observed Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.): "If P=
resident Bush's hard-edged conservative approach has in fact caused the ba=
lance to shift towards Democrats in the Senate, it will have profound impl=
ications not just for California, but for the environment and our nation's=
energy policy." Environmentalists seemed almost giddy as they cont=
emplated the possible impact of Jeffords' decision on the policies they ca=
re about. All of a sudden, they said, it seems less likely that oil =
exploration will take place in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, that r=
ecreational snowmobiles will have free access to Yellowstone National Park=
, or that the administration's desire to promote nuclear power will be emb=
raced by Congress. On the other hand, it seems more probable that C=
ongress would approve a new plan for managing a vast swath of the Sierra N=
evada to protect the region's oldest trees, consider legislation to restri=
ct emissions of carbon dioxide from power plants and protect California fr=
om a resurgence of offshore oil drilling. "It's stunning how broad t=
he repercussions are, particularly on the environment," said Gregory Wetst=
one of the Natural Resources Defense Council. "We're trying not to count o=
ur chickens before they hatch. But it will be easier for us in our battles=
at least to keep from moving backwards." For instance, Jeffords is=
a chief advocate of a bill that would regulate carbon dioxide from power =
plants. And if events play out as expected, he'll become the new chairman =
of the Senate committee with jurisdiction over the issue. Another i=
ssue under his purview would be the two-decade dispute over a proposed rep=
ository for the nation's spent nuclear fuel at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. =
"Yucca Mountain is a dead turkey," declared Michael Francis of the W=
ilderness Society. Environmentalists had been worried that a number=
of pro-development provisions would be packed into appropriation bills. B=
ut with Democratic senators in charge, that would become less of a threat,=
they said. "Every wacko idea Republicans have will get a higher lev=
el of scrutiny," Francis said. The biggest change would be the power=
of Senate Democrats to decide which bills will be considered in committee=
s, and which ones will make it to the floor of the Senate for votes. =
As part of a new Democratic majority, Feinstein and fellow California De=
mocrat Barbara Boxer are likely to gain leverage with the administration o=
n a number of issues considered important to the state. "That transl=
ates into more federal assistance for California across the board," predic=
ted Steve Maviglio, spokesman for Gov. Gray Davis. "I think it mean=
s more attention to our state, for sure," Boxer said. "Right now, the pres=
ident doesn't seem to give a darn. They're all looking at California as a =
Democratic state. They're not interested." Feinstein, who has been =
unable to arrange a meeting with Bush to discuss the energy crisis, may ge=
t better treatment if winning Democratic support becomes more important to=
the administration. She has been regarded as a bridge-builder who worked =
effectively with Republicans in the past. "This has not been a warm =
and friendly administration," she complained Wednesday. "They've got peopl=
e who know all the answers and don't want to listen." The White Hou=
se disputed that. In fact, Bush agreed Wednesday to meet with Davis during=
the president's first visit to California next week. Under a Democ=
ratic majority, Feinstein would be in line to chair two subcommittees: the=
military construction panel of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and t=
he technology, terrorism and government information subcommittee of the Se=
nate Judiciary Committee. Boxer would be in line to chair the subco=
mmittee on Superfund, waste control and risk assessment, and the Foreign R=
elations subcommittee on international operations and terrorism. Mav=
iglio predicted that the effects of Jeffords' expected party defection wou=
ld be felt immediately. The chairmanship of the Senate Energy and N=
atural Resources Committee would be taken away from Frank H. Murkowski (R-=
Alaska), who has been "openly hostile to California's plight," and handed =
to Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), who supports Davis' request for electricity pri=
ce controls, according to Maviglio. Democrats have assailed Bush's e=
nergy plan for tilting heavily toward the supply side. With Democrats in c=
harge of the Senate, the administration would be more likely to compromise=
, perhaps beefing up funding for Democrat-supported causes such as increas=
ed energy assistance to low-income households and more aggressive promotio=
n of conservation and renewable energy sources such as wind and solar powe=
r. Search the archives of the Los Angeles Times for similar stories ab=
out: United States - Politics , Republican Party , James M Jeffords , P=
olitical Party Defections , California - Politics , Senate (U.s.) . You =
will not be charged to look for stories, only to retrieve one. =09
News Politics Entertainment music , movies , art , TV , restaurants =
[IMAGE] Business Travel Marketplace jobs , homes , cars , rentals , cla=
ssifieds [IMAGE] Sports Commentary Shopping [IMAGE] =09[IMAGE]=09 G=
et Copyright Clearance Copyright 2001 Los Angeles Times Click for permi=
ssion to reprint (PRC# 1.528.2001_000043610) =09

[IMAGE] =09