"President Obama's top aides huddled [Wednesday] with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Democratic committee leaders to map out a strategy for cobbling together 60 votes on a comprehensive energy and climate change bill once lawmakers return next month from their spring break.
The hour-long meeting in Reid's office included White House legislative affairs director Phil Schiliro and Obama's energy and climate adviser, Carol Browner. According to a Senate Democratic leadership aide, the Obama officials pledged to work with the committee leaders once Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) release their bill next month.
Reid (D-Nev.) encouraged the Senate committee leaders to give "constructive comments and suggestions within a few weeks of when they get text," the aide said. Several of the senators in the room expressed hope that additional GOP senators beyond Graham would soon start to publicly support and engage in the legislative process.
"The leader feels before he brings up a bill he wants to know he's got a shot at getting it through," Environment and Public Works Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said before the meeting in Reid's office."