The controversial Clean Water rule known as Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) was the subject of two bills in the Senate on Tuesday and hours of debate on both sides, despite one bill failing to invoke cloture.
The bill that failed was sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) and would have instructed EPA to craft a WOTUS rule that “takes into consideration positions held by folks like farmers, ranchers, manufacturers and small businesses.” The legislation had bipartisan legislation and was backed by a number of Democrats, including Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND). Sen. Heitkamp on WOTUS
North Dakota’s Republican Senator John Hoeven also spoke on behalf of the bill that would send WOTUS back to the drawing board.
Sen. Hoeven on WOTUS
The Senate did vote to allow debate on a resolution of disapproval, sponsored by Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), that would scrap the WOTUS rule entirely. Sen. Ernst on WOTUS disapproval
President Obama has already said he will veto any bill passed by Congress that makes changes in the water rule which has already been put on hold by court cases against it. A vote on Sen. Ernst’s bill will be held on Wednesday.