* Bill would have delayed controls on industrial boilers
* Senate vote shows House Republicans may face roadblocks
* Joe Manchin lone Democrat to vote for bill
By Timothy Gardner
WASHINGTON, Nov 3 Democrats on Thursday blocked
the first major bill in the U.S. Senate that would have delayed
the Environmental Protection Agency's clean air rules.
The bill, which needed 60 votes to pass, got only 47 votes.
Joe Manchin from West Virginia, who faces reelection next year,
was the lone Democrat to vote for the bill. His state is rich
in coal, the fuel that could see added costs from a raft of
upcoming EPA rules on power plants and industry.
The lone Republican to vote against the bill was Olympia
Snowe of Maine.
The bill, called the Long-Term Surface Transportation
Extension Act of 2011 and sponsored by Senator Orrin Hatch, was
promoted by Republicans as a jobs measure that would have
allowed businesses to hire by reducing regulatory uncertainty.
Democrats disagreed. "This is not a jobs bill," said
Senator Barbara Boxer, the chairman of the chamber's Committee
on Environment and Public Works. "If you can't breathe, you
The bill contained two measures to block EPA controls on
toxic emissions from industrial boilers and cement factories.
Environmentalists said the vote in the Senate showed that
the battle being waged in the Republican-controlled House of
Representatives to roll back EPA rules could face roadblocks in
the upper chamber.
"We're glad the Senate took steps today to stop this kind
of madness, and we hope we see more of this from all levels and
branches of our government," Earthjustice associate legislative
counsel Stephanie Maddin said in an email.
The House passed a wide-ranging bill to delay clean air
rules in September. [ID:nS1E78M1HT] Republicans hope to attach
some of those measures to a spending bill or other legislation
that would be hard for Democrats to vote against.
(Reporting by Timothy Gardner; editing by Jim Marshall)