"President Barack Obama's so-called green team has undergone a growth spurt.
The group of Cabinet secretaries and White House advisers who meet regularly to craft the president's energy and environmental agenda now numbers 13, double what it was during the administration's early days.
It's just one of the signs that the administration is stepping up its push to pass energy and climate legislation this year, as the Senate continues to wrangle with Obama's other top domestic priority, health care reform. The House has already passed a bill.
Since the summer, when everyone else's attention was focused on the heated town hall meetings over health care, Obama administration officials have been meeting with more than half the Senate, made calls to nearly 100 mayors in 17 states, and met with numerous governors, according to White House records. Their goal, according to Carol Browner, the president's assistant for energy and climate change, "is to get the bill moving and keep it moving."
'It's really engaging a wide array of people across the administration to make sure that we're answering the questions that the Senate needs answered and working with individual members as they think about how they can support comprehensive energy legislation,' Browner said Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press. 'It's just grown and grown and grown, with more and more Cabinet agencies and secretaries wanting to be involved.'"