06/17/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Climate Bill Bugged Even Some Senators From Greener States

Last week's Senate debate over a bill to cap U.S. greenhouse-gas emissions wasn't much of a cliffhanger. Opponents called the bill too expensive; proponents called it cheaper than the alternatives; the legislation failed.

But the discussion featured some tasty morsels that are worth remembering for what's expected to be a more-serious debate over U.S. climate legislation next year: tart reminders of how high-minded rhetoric about addressing an environmental problem falters over the details of who will pay for it.

One such tidbit came courtesy of two senators from the American West. On the surface, Washington's Maria Cantwell and Idaho's Mike Crapo are far apart. She's a Democrat who voted for the bill, with reservations. He's a Republican who voted against it, with relish.