In recent weeks, Senators Boxer (D-CA), Lieberman (I-CT) and Warner (R-VA) have sought to build momentum for Senate action on climate change. Their push resulted in the Senate beginning debate on legislation. On 2 June, the Senate began debating the Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act of 2008 (S. 3036). However, falling a dozen votes short of the 60 required to end a Republican filibuster, the legislation died by the end of the week. Senator Boxer, chairwoman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and manager of the legislation on the Senate floor said, "It's clear a majority of Congress wants to act." The bill would have mandated reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

The legislation was defeated on a cloture vote, a procedural vote used in the Senate to place a time limit on consideration of a bill and overcome a filibuster. Under the cloture rule, three-fifths of the full Senate must vote to invoke cloture. Sixteen Senators did not vote including Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Barack Obama (D-IL), and Hillary Clinton (D-NY).


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