politics

Republican Senate Energy Chair Casts Doubt on Trump Power Rescue

Lisa Murkowski

Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

The Republican chairman of the Senate Energy Committee says she’s not yet sold on President Donald Trump’s plan to prop up struggling nuclear and coal plants in the name of national security.

“I have more questions on this than I have answers on this right now,” Alaskan Senator Lisa Murkowski said in an interview. “It would be a substantive change with really how we allow our electric markets to work. If this is going to be something that is going to move forward I want every question answered.”

The Trump administration is considering using a pair of seldom-used laws to exercise emergency authority to order grid operators to buy electricity from power plants that are struggling in the face of cheap natural gas, according to a memo obtained last week by Bloomberg News.

“I cannot out of hand dismiss national security concerns,” Murkowski said. But “does it really rise to that level? I don’t know.”

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