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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will endorse the joint Arctic Council statement. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

The Trump administration objected to climate change references in a planned joint statement for the upcoming international Arctic Council forum, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: As one of 8 Arctic nations, the U.S. plays a key role in setting policy for the region, which is warming at more than twice the rate of the rest of the globe. Under President Trump, the U.S. has pursued policies aimed at boosting its production of fossil fuels, which contribute to planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions.

Where it stands: According to member state officials speaking to the Post on the condition of anonymity, the U.S. has softened its position in the past few days on completely removing climate change references from the council's joint statement. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will endorse the final statement.

  • “At one point they wanted to remove the expression ‘climate change’ and blocked references of the Paris agreement and other international agreements in the language. But the dialogue has improved during the last couple of days,” one senior official said.

Asked about the Post story in a background briefing, a State Department official said:

"Climate is a complex global issue and it’s a global challenge all around, and this administration supports a balanced approach that promotes economic growth and improves energy security while protecting the environment. And we talk about that in each forum and we work with our partners to come to agreement on how we express it, but again, more importantly, what action we take to address it."

Go deeper: Alaska is feeling the effects of the Arctic's changing climate

Go deeper

House passes sweeping election and anti-corruption bill

Photo: Win McNamee via Getty Images

The House voted 220-210Wednesday to pass Democrats' expansive election and anti-corruption bill.

Why it matters: Expanding voting access has been a top priority for Democrats for years, but the House passage of the For the People Act (H.R. 1) comes as states across the country consider legislation to rollback voting access in the aftermath of former President Trump's loss.

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

House passes George Floyd Justice in Policing Act

Photo: Stephen Maturen via Getty Images

The House voted 220 to 212 on Wednesday evening to pass a policing bill named for George Floyd, the Black man whose death in Minneapolis last year led to nationwide protests against police brutality and racial injustice.

Why it matters: The legislation overhauls qualified immunity for police officers, bans chokeholds at the federal level, prohibits no-knock warrants in federal drug cases and outlaws racial profiling.

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Senate Republicans plan to exact pain before COVID relief vote

Sen. Ron Johnson. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Republicans are demanding a full, 600-page bill reading — and painful, multi-hour "vote-a-rama" — as Democrats forge ahead with their plan to pass President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.

Why it matters: The procedural war is aimed at forcing Democrats to defend several parts the GOP considers unnecessary and partisan. While the process won't substantially impact the final version of the mammoth bill, it'll provide plenty of ammunition for future campaign messaging.