Arctic Refuge drilling permission tucked into tax bill: What's at stake

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Mark Porubcansky Tucked into the Senate version of the mammoth tax bill is a longstanding Republican priority that has been unable to win approval on its own: authorization for oil and gas exploration in part of Alaska’s 19-million-acre Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.In 1995, President Clinton vetoed a budget that would have permitted drilling. In 2005, a filibuster by Democrats stopped it. This year, if Republicans in Congress can agree on a final version of the tax bill and ram it through both Houses, it probably will be included. There is little doubt President Trump would sign it into law.That doesn’t mean, though, that drilling is likely to start anytime soon. The immediate future is more likely to be dominated by lawsuits and...

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