On Tuesday afternoon, US Senators voted 0-57 on whether to take a vote on the Green New Deal, according to . Fifty-three Republicans, three Democrats, and an Independent from Maine voted not to advance the resolution, and 43 Democrats voted “present,” essentially taking no official side in the vote.
The Green New Deal is a sweeping but non-binding resolution, unofficially committing the United States to radically update its energy grid with renewable energy in a span of 10 years. The plan would be accomplished through major infrastructure projects akin to those seen during the New Deal of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s time.
The plan, sponsored by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) in the Senate and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) in the House, has been extraordinarily controversial. It’s been panned as “socialism” on the right and tacitly disavowed by more moderate Democrats in Republican-leaning states.
The vote was pushed in the Senate by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ken.), who hoped to divide Democrats by forcing them to take a side on the resolution. Per , McConnell said in a statement today that “The American people will see, they will see which of their senators can do the commonsense thing and vote no on this destructive socialist daydream. And they will see which senators are so fully committed to radical left-wing ideology that they can’t even vote ‘no’ on self-inflicted economic ruin.”
The 43 “present” votes from Democrats were essentially protest votes, challenging McConnell’s political play. Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called the vote a “sham” hours before it occurred, because Republicans refused to schedule hearings, hear expert testimony, or work on a bipartisan compromise resolution, according to .
notes that “Every Democratic senator running for the party’s [presidential] nomination in 2020 has co-sponsored the Senate Green New Deal resolution.”
Although the House could call a vote on the Green New Deal, there are no immediate plans to move forward on it.