Clinton Lobbies For Global Warming Pact
President also grapples with DNC's $13 million debt on his Florida trip
MIAMI (AllPolitics, Dec. 11) -- President Bill Clinton, on a political fund-raising trip to Florida, today began what could be an uphill drive to win Senate ratification of a new international greenhouse-gas agreement to combat global warming.
"I see already the papers are full of people saying, 'The sky is falling, the sky is falling. It's a terrible thing,'" Clinton said. "Every time we've tried to improve the American environment in the last 25 or 30 years, somebody has predicted that it would wreck the economy."
The global-warming agreement, negotiated at a conference in Kyoto, Japan, calls on industrialized nations to reduce heat-trapping greenhouse-gas emissions below 1990 levels. Some members of the Senate say they cannot support the proposal because it would impose unfair costs on the U.S. economy and slow economic growth.
Clinton said the nation has made progress cleaning its air and water without hurting the economy. "So don't believe the skeptics," Clinton said. "Give us a chance to make the case."
Clinton made his appeal during a stop at a Miami-area Coast Guard station, where he praised the agency's work to halt drug smuggling. Clinton is also in south Florida for three fund-raisers, a luncheon for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Buddy MacKay and two evening events for the Democratic National Committee.
His party is $13 million in debt, and by this evening, Clinton hopes to have raised a total of about $2.9 million in two days in New York and Florida.
The MacKay luncheon is expected to raise about $500,000, and the two evening events, $1 million. On Wednesday, Democrats raised $1.4 million at two events Clinton attended in New York.
The president took a 15-minute ride on a Coast Guard patrol boat, the "Shandeleur," and told its crew, "I want America to know you are making a big difference."
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Thursday Dec. 11, 1997
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