‘Top Line’ — Momentum for Environmental Agenda?

By Caitlin Taylor

May 19, 2009 1:24pm

ABC News’ Rick Klein reports: With President Obama touting what he’s describing as a major breakthrough agreement to increase the fuel efficiency of automobiles, we chatted with Dan Weiss, a senior fellow with the liberal Center for American Progress, about what this means for the broader Obama environmental agenda.    On ABCNews.com’s “Top Line,” Weiss made clear that the administration and its allies hope that this announcement provides a boost for the central element of that agenda: a cap-and-trade system for carbon emissions. Such a measure is now being debated by a House committee, though some liberal voices are already concerned that it’s being watered down to win votes. “This is a piece of the overall program to reduce global-warming pollution,” Weiss said of today’s announcement. Critical in this agreement, he said, is that auto manufacturers are coming to the table — even though they’ve largely opposed increases in fuel-efficiency standards for decades. “To their credit, they’ve finally gotten with the program to support better fuel economy, which will save oil and save consumers’ money,” Weiss said. Watch our full interview with Dan Weiss HERE. Also today, we chatted with Republican strategist Kevin Madden, about RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s efforts to move the GOP forward, and about Gov. Jon Huntsman’s, R-Utah, selection to become ambassador to China. Watch our interview with Kevin Madden HERE.

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