Capitol Hill rule: Don't upstage a committee chairman who's sponsoring legislation that affects your bottom line. But the Edison Electric Institute's (EEI) new leader couldn't restrain himself last week as the chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee fielded reporters' questions about a proposal aimed at balancing the financial strain of proposed greenhouse-gas emission curbs on utilities and other businesses. Sweating heavily in the heat of television lights in the committee meeting room, EEI's Jeff Sterba tapped Democratic Sen. Jeff Bingaman's shoulder, stopping the New Mexico lawmaker in mid-sentence. "Wait," Bingaman said. "I guess Jeff Sterba wants to try and explain the 'safety valve.'"