LCV Action Fund Memo: Yesli Vega Is Wrong For Virginia’s Environment and Families

Courtnee Connon, courtnee_connon@lcv.org

To: Interested Parties
From: Craig Auster, LCV Action Fund Vice President of Political Affairs
Date: June 23, 2022
Re: LCV Action Fund Memo: Yesli Vega Is Wrong For Virginia’s Environment and Families

Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega won the Republican Primary in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District meaning she’ll be up against climate and environmental justice champion Representative Abigail Spanberger (endorsed by LCV Action Fund in April) in the general election this November.

In response to Vega’s nomination, LCV Action Fund issued the following statement from Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld:

“The contrast between Abigail Spanberger and Yesli Vega could not be more stark. Every voter in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District who cares about clean air to breathe, clean water to drink and ensuring we leave a healthy environment for our children and grandchildren should be alarmed by Yesli Vega’s record of voting to protect polluter profits over people. Fortunately Abigail Spanberger is fighting hard in Congress to create millions of clean energy jobs, lower costs for hardworking Virginians and ensure a safe climate for future generations.”

In case you missed it, here are some of the reasons why Vega is the wrong choice for the 7th District:

  • In 2020, Vega voted against Prince William County joining other Northern Virginia local governments in setting a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% and achieve 100% clean, renewable electricity by 2030. Taking action against climate change and transitioning to clean energy are critical for protecting Virginians’ health and the Commonwealth’s economy. Climate change is already impacting Virginia, including sea level rise, coastal erosion and saltwater intrusion, hurting farmers, raising energy costs, more extreme weather events, and increasing risks for lung and heart diseases. But instead of working to combat the climate crisis, Vega argued that the measure would hurt housing development in the county. This isn’t surprising as Yesli Vegas received $91,251 from donors from the real estate and construction industry for her county supervisor campaign.
  • Vega said that to combat high gas prices, the solution is “getting American energy production up and running again” but it is clear that more oil and gas drilling will not save consumers at the pumps, it will only put our health and environment, especially our drinking water, at risk. Long-term we need to invest in electrifying our vehicles, not doubling down on expensive, volatile and dirty fossil fuels.
  • On her campaign’s issue page, Vega writes “I strongly oppose bills like HR1,” but The For the People Act would make critical reforms that would get corporate polluter money out of politics, expand voting rights, stop partisan gerrymandering that allows politicians to choose their voters rather than voters choosing their elected officials, and more.
  • Following the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol, Vega defended the insurrectionists, saying “It was actually a group of Americans exercising their 1st amendment rights and as a result of doing that they’ve been persecuted, shamed, forced out of their jobs, forced to retire, and listen, the double standard is sickening.”
  • In the primary, she was endorsed by a number of extreme, anti-environment Republican politicians including U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, who in the 2018 election cycle was the top recipient of funding from the oil and gas industry; former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli who launched a government-funded “witch hunt” against a climate scientist; former U.S. Representative Dave Brat who promoted false claims that climate scientists in the 1970s predicted another ice age; and U.S. Representative Louie Gohmert, who among other controversies, asked a U.S. Forest Service official about altering the moon and Earth’s orbits to combat climate change, showing a profound disregard for science.

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Paid for by the League of Conservation Voters Action Fund and authorized by Spanberger for Congress.

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