The Republican delegation went to COP26 with a clear message: both parties recognize the need to fight climate change. But did world leaders take them seriously? And how will Republican leaders sell that pivot to Republican voters? Fresh off his trip to Glasgow, Scotland, Rep. Garret Graves, a Louisiana Republican, spoke with POLITICO’s Ryan Heath. He shares — if not a commitment to the Build Back Better plan — his ideas on turning climate pledges into climate action.
About how Republicans and Democrats share more than they might think on climate policy
“If I go into a very liberal room, and I may go in there and start talking about how we need to improve the competitiveness of U.S. companies on a global scale, I may get a little bit of interest. But if I say those same words in a more conservative Republican room, I think you’re going to get a lot more attention. The thing is that you can be talking about the same damn thing, but you can talk about it different ways.” — Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.), ranking member on the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis
On the limitations of COPs
“What happens if you go back to your employer and you submit something and they say, ‘Well, this isn’t quite right,’ and you come back a second time or third time, a fourth time, a 25th time? At some point, I’m going to take a guess that your employer is going to be like, ‘You know what? I think you may be in the wrong field.’ And this was the 26th COP and emissions are still going up.”