A composed and collected Lisa Jackson, the EPA Administrator, sat down for a chat with Jon Stewart, the host of “The Daily Show,” for an episode that that aired last night on Comedy Central in the wake of Republican Senator Lindsey Graham’s announcement that he might step away from climate bill negotiations.
With a wry grin, Stewart goaded Jackson to say something negative about the senator. “Do you feel like Senator Graham is a big fat baby, and would you like to say to him right now on the show, ‘Waah, waah waah? Waah, Lindsey Graham’?” he asked.
Even though many environmentalists would like to say exactly that to the South Carolina senator, Jackson deflected the question gracefully, saying, “No, listen. I think, you know, Senator Graham is looking at a changing political landscape, and I do think that at this point it’s in all of our interest to invite him back in, tell him how important his work will be to success ultimately on the bill.”
The climate and energy bill, which was scheduled to be unveiled yesterday after its sponsors, Senators John Kerry (D-MA), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), and until last week, Lindsey Graham, spent months developing a piece of legislation that could pass in the chamber. Graham threatened to walk away after the democratic leadership discussed simultaneously working on immigration reform. (For more, read our earlier post.)
Thankfully, Stewart, with the help of Jackson’s clear and thoughtful responses, helped lift the dark cloud that’s currently looming over the issue—at least temporarily.