WASHINGTON, DC—The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) Action Fund, which works to elect candidates who will implement sound environmental policies, announced its endorsement today of candidates from three Michigan districts who are running for election to the U.S. House of Representatives: Lon Johnson (MI-1), Paul Clements (MI-6) and Gretchen Driskell (MI-7).
“With so much at stake for our planet and public health this year, we need to elect leaders who take our clean air and clean water seriously and will do something about it. Lon Johnson, Paul Clements and Gretchen Driskell are three allies we can count on to protect our drinking water and promote strong clean energy policies,” said LCV Action Fund President Gene Karpinski. “Johnson, Clements and Driskell all have the proven vision and commitment to protecting clean air and water for every community, in Michigan and across our country for generations to come.”
“In a state surrounded by the Great Lakes but grappling with the environmental injustice of Flint’s poisoned drinking water, these three candidates understand the urgency that no zip code be left out or left behind. Now, more than ever, we need leaders in Congress like Lon Johnson, Paul Clements, and Gretchen Driskell, who are deeply in touch with their districts and will give voice to the needs of Michigan communities,” said Michigan League of Conservation Voters Executive Director Lisa Wozniak. “Michigan’s Great Lakes, national parks and forests are too precious to entrust to just anyone—they shape our way of life, and these exciting new leaders will protect that way of life.”
“I’m honored to have the LCV Action Fund’s endorsement,” said Lon Johnson. “I look forward to continuing our work together to invest in, and protect, our three greatest assets: our people, land and Great Lakes.”
“I am honored to receive the endorsement of the League of Conservation Voters Action Fund,” said Clements. “My opponent has been called ‘one of the biggest threats to planet Earth on planet Earth.’ It’s time that our district was represented by someone who acknowledges the peril of climate change and will fight to bring sustainable, clean energy jobs to Southwest Michigan and to make America a leader in climate action.”
“Like many of my neighbors, I am proud to call Michigan—a state with one of the most diverse and beautiful environments in the country— my home,” said Driskell. “I am honored to receive the endorsement of the League of Conservation Voters Action Fund, an organization that understands that Michiganders deserve a representative who will prioritize keeping our Great Lakes pristine and open spaces green. In Congress, I’ll continue to work to protect our Great Lakes, ensure clean, safe drinking water, and promote a clean energy economy.”
Lon Johnson was born and raised in Rockford, Michigan, and lives in Kalkaska. He has made protecting Northern Michigan’s environment a central pillar of his campaign for Congress. A lifelong fisher and hunter, Johnson recognizes the negative impact that climate change is having from slower and warmer streams to extreme weather, and is committed to taking action to address the climate crisis. In August 2015, he called for closing the aging Enbridge oil pipeline under the Mackinac Straits until inspectors determine that it is operating safely. Johnson has vocally and repeatedly warned about the potential for oil to spill from the pipeline, just as it did in Kalamazoo. Noting that 21 percent of fresh water in America is in Michigan’s First Congressional District, he wants to create a water institute in the district to study how we can better use water in the agricultural, manufacturing, residential and commercial sectors. He believes America must lead the world in protecting clean water.
Paul Clements has taught political science at Western Michigan University for over 20 years and is the chair of WMU’s Working Group on Climate Change. He has published numerous academic papers relating to the politics of climate change and has been active in organizing marches in his community around climate events such as the historic international climate negotiations held in Paris last December. He has been outspoken about the Flint water crisis, drawing attention to the broader issue of lead contamination in drinking water and calling for investments in infrastructure in order to improve water quality.
Gretchen Driskell has lived in Saline, Michigan for nearly three decades, and has served her community as mayor for 14 years and was elected to represent Michigan’s 52nd House District in 2012. She has been a strong environmental ally in the state legislature, earning an 85 percent lifetime score on the Michigan League of Conservation Voters’ Scorecard. She has consistently voted to protect Michigan’s wetlands and wildlife, and sponsored legislation to protect the Great Lakes, provide greater oversight of fracking and oil and gas pipelines, protect children from pesticides and increase Michigan’s Renewable Energy Standard.
Johnson, Clements and Driskell are all featured on LCV Action Fund’s GiveGreen website, the only bundling website devoted exclusively to raising money for environmental champions for federal office.
Paid for by the League of Conservation Voters Action Fund and authorized by Lon Johnson for Congress, Clements for Congress and Gretchen Driskell for Congress.