To: Interested Parties
From: Tiernan Sittenfeld, SVP of Government Affairs, League of Conservation Voters
Date: March 2, 2020
Re: Climate is a top issue across Super Tuesday states
As the 2020 Presidential campaign moves beyond the first four states, new polling of registered voters from Climate Nexus, in partnership with the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and the George Mason University Center, in the 26 states scheduled to vote between today and March 17, shows broad support for climate action, with climate change second only to healthcare in importance among Democratic voters. Notably, 72% of all voters, across party lines, said they would be more likely to support a candidate who favored increasing government funding for renewable energy – one of several findings suggesting climate will remain a winning issue through the general election.
Many of the Super Tuesday states are leading the charge when it comes to a clean energy economy. The fifteen states and territories that vote on March 3rd include four of the top ten solar producers (CA, NC, MA, TX) and five of the top ten wind power states (TX, OK, CA, MN, CO).
Demand for climate action is a consistent theme in polls leading up to Super Tuesday and throughout the past year. We saw it in early states (IA, NH), we saw it among Latinx and African American voters (NV, SC), and we saw it in broad, multistate polls (CO, WI, MI, GA, AZ, CO, FL, GA, IA, MI, MN, NV, NH, NC, OH, PA, VA and WI).
Candidates are answering the clear demand for climate action by continuing to make their priorities for climate action part of their closing arguments heading into Super Tuesday in state after state.
In California, the number-one solar power-producing state, the LA Times and KQED highlighted each candidate’s climate positions. More recently, Mike Bloomberg made climate change the focus of his recent campaign swing through the state and Joe Biden touted his record on climate action. Late 2019 polling showed climate as a top issue for Democratic primary voters.
In Texas, the number-one state for wind power, a Progress Texas poll found that climate change is the #2 issue for Texas Democrats behind healthcare, and Bernie Sanders talked about climate change-fueled extreme storms and the need for action in his rallies last weekend.
In North Carolina, fall 2019 polling found that 91% of Democrats in the state support limiting carbon emissions.
In Virginia, Elizabeth Warren highlighted the urgency of climate action and her support for the Green New Deal and her Blue New Deal.
In Colorado, addressing the climate change crisis and moving the U.S. to 100% clean energy is the #1 issue for CO Democratic primary voters, according to a January LCV poll. Longtime Democratic pollster Andrew Baumann told NPR, “Four years ago voters might say they cared about [climate change], but they weren’t going to vote on it — and that’s really changed.” Amy Klobuchar spoke in Colorado about her opposition to drilling on public lands.
In early 2019, the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) launched our $3.1 million Change the Climate 2020 effort to ensure the eventual 2020 Democratic nominee is committed to immediate action on climate. Our staff and volunteers have attended more than 100 candidate events in early states and asked more than 60 climate questions directly of candidates. Check out videos of our interactions with candidates here, and for everything the candidates have said and done on climate change (with a filter for each Super Tuesday state) visit changetheclimate2020.com.