Washington, D.C. — A new poll of 20 battleground U.S. House districts conducted by Global Strategy Group (GSG) finds that environmental messaging can swing competitive 2018 races. Anti-environmental candidates start with a 2-point disadvantage in a set of districts that Republicans won by 15 points in 2016. More important, messaging focused on the Trump administration’s attacks on the environment and their public health impacts shifts vote choice by 11 percent in favor of their pro-environment challengers.
“Environmental messaging can swing battleground districts, especially when you talk about the health impacts of cutting protections for clean air and water,” said Andrew Baumann, who conducted the poll for GSG. “Republicans who have voted for this Congress’s many environmental attacks will pay the price.”
LCV Victory Fund and EDF Action sponsored the poll. A summary memo can be found here.
“We already knew that voters oppose the Trump administration’s myriad of environmental attacks, but now we see just how much they’ll backfire on Republican candidates this November,” said Pete Maysmith, LCV Victory Fund Senior Vice President for Campaigns. “Environmental messaging breaks through in battleground races because protecting clean air, clean water and public health are top issues for families across the country. They want a Congress that sides with them, not Scott Pruitt and corporate polluters like the Koch Brothers.”
The poll found that messages focused on environmental issues and efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act were highly effective in these districts, especially among undecided voters. Favorability of embattled EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and the oil billionaire Koch Brothers is also very low, along with approval of several of Trump’s environmental policies like drilling on public land, including in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and cutting funding for the EPA.
“Voting to protect clean air, safe water and a healthy environment is not just good policy, it’s good politics,” said Joe Bonfiglio, President of EDF Action. “This survey shows Members of Congress can side with Scott Pruitt, Donald Trump and big polluters, or they can side with the majority of voters in their districts. But they can’t do both.”
The districts sampled include CA-10, CA-21, CA-25, CA-39, CA-48, CA-49, CO-06, IA-01, IL-06, MI-11, MN-2, MN-03, NC-09, NJ-03, NJ-11, NM-02, TX-23, TX-32, VA-10 and WA-08.
Paid for by LCV Victory Fund, www.lcvvictoryfund.org, EDF Action, www.edfaction.org, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.