But even with a more moderate candidate like former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who has said he thinks climate change should be addressed, the stakes for the EPA could still be significant, especially if the issue of the agency's budget is the focus. Any potential Republican administration would be less likely than President Obama to back the EPA's funding and regulatory power. In that case, the debate over the EPA and climate change would not be whether climate change is a problem, but what the EPA should to do about it, says Roy.
Still, even in the face of scrutiny, EPA administrator Lisa Jackson rolled out an additional interstate pollution rule on coal plants under the Clean Air Act Thursday and is poised to continue to implement rules on climate change as planned.
Corrected on 07/10/11: A previous version of this article omitted the first mention of Kentucky Republican Rep. Hal Rogers and the identification for Manik Roy, vice president of federal government outreach at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.