WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), senior member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, sent President Obama a letter on Monday about the president's scheduled attendance at the U.N. Climate Change Summit in New York City. In the letter, Inhofe questioned recent reports that the Obama Administration is considering ways to bypass the Senate and enter into an international agreement to reduce the United States' greenhouse gas emissions.
In the letter, Inhofe wrote, "Recent reports have suggested that your Administration is considering a strategy that would establish binding targets, but without requiring consideration by the United States Senate. This is deeply troubling. Article II, Section II of the United States Constitution clearly precludes any binding international agreement from entering into force until the Senate gives its consent to ratification. Given this, what form do you anticipate this agreement taking? Under what legal basis will you commit the United States to performing any specific actions in accordance with an international agreement without the advice and consent of the Senate?"
Inhofe continued the letter by highlighting that Russia, India, China, Germany, and Australia chose not to attend the meeting. He also pointed towards Australia's recent repeal of its carbon tax, and Canada's decision to remove itself from the Kyoto Treaty. Furthermore, Inhofe questioned President Obama on how the nation's economy can "accelerate its growth and expand opportunities if it is crippled by environmental mandates that strengthen the competitiveness of other countries…"
A copy of the letter can be read here.