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QUOTES OF THE WEEK:
“In your gut, you don’t believe the federal government should have federal lands.”
“While Donald Trump is blowing smoke on climate change, we here in the West have been choking on it this summer. And if we don’t start electing people — from city council to governor — who are willing to confront climate change, we’re all going to pay dearly.”
“Cities and states are continuing to lead where Congress and the White House won’t.”
LCV IN THE NEWS:
ThinkProgress: Congress allows parks program to expire over the weekend
OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY:
LCV’s state affiliates are hard at work protecting the environment and fighting climate change in the states. Here’s what people are reading across the country:
Florida Politics (FL): Environmental group launches ad buy supporting Kayser Enneking, Lindsay Cross
Florida Politics (FL): Andrew Gillum draws hundreds to environmental discussion in conservative territory
Gainesville Sun (FL): Group dumps $250K in anti-Perry, Brandes ads
The Roanoke Times (VA): Blue Ridge Caucus: Del. Chris Hurst honored for pipeline opposition efforts
Boise Weekly (ID): City of Boise Pledges to Meet Ambitious Clean-Energy Goals by 2030
Gloucester Daily News (MA): Baker, Gonzalez agree to offshore wind pledge
Wilton Patch (CT): Boucher Endorsed by CT League of Conservation Voters
32 DAYS UNTIL THE MIDTERMS: …and environmental issues are dominating debates in key races, from Montana to Florida.
MARYLAND MATT: Public lands champ Jon Tester’s challenger simply doesn’t understand Montana’s way of life. Senate candidate and Dirty Dozen member Matt Rosendale has attempted to hide from his record of supporting efforts to transfer public lands to the state — which could mean that some of the state’s most treasured places could end up sold off and closed to the public. In a debate last weekend, Tester took Rosendale to task: “A few short years ago he said turn them over to the state, get rid of them….He doesn’t understand how important those public lands are. They don’t have any public lands in Maryland.”
RED TIDE RICK: In Florida, the toxic algae and red tide crises continue to be a top issue for voters, with Senate candidate Rick Scott trying to pin the blame on anyone but himself. Senator Bill Nelson wouldn’t let him get away with that slimly spin in Tuesday’s debate: “We would call it a whopper, what he is saying, because it’s totally disjointed from the truth… [Scott] has systematically disassembled the environmental agencies of the state.”
STOP KAVANAUGH: Over bipartisan opposition, the Senate voted today to end debate on SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh, setting up a confirmation vote for Saturday afternoon. LCV called for Trump to withdraw the Kavanaugh nomination after Dr. Ford’s testimony and has vocally opposed him and his long anti-environmental record since the beginning. For the final push, we’re joining forces with those standing in front of the Capitol at the People’s Filibuster and are continuing to urge our members to call their Senators to tell them to vote NO on Kavanaugh.
RECOGNIZING CHAMPIONS: This week, LCV hosted its annual New York dinner, where Washington Governor Jay Inslee, our keynote speaker, laid out how we can still take action to fight climate change. Additionally, Michael Bloomberg was honored with our Lifetime Achievement Award for his leadership in supporting environmental causes. In his acceptance speech, Bloomberg announced that he planned to double his investment in LCV Victory Fund, which will now be $5 million.
GIVEGREEN SURPASSES $14 MILLION RAISED: GiveGreen – which helps people across the country contribute directly to pro-environment candidates – has surpassed $14 million in fundraising this year, making it one of the largest issue-focused grassroots fundraising platforms in the country. That’s nearly double the $8.4 million GiveGreen raised in 2016 — and there’s still a month to go!
HITTING THE AIRWAVES: LCV Victory Fund launched two six-figure ad campaigns this week to defeat pro-polluting members of Congress: David Brat (VA-07) and Kevin Yoder (KS-03). Brat has voted for all but one of the anti-environmental attacks this session and has consistently supported corporate polluters instead of Virginia’s health and environment. Yoder has an atrocious record, and our ads highlight his work to remove protections for vital waterways, air, and people with preexisting conditions.
EVEN MORE: LCV Victory Fund also launched a new TV ad this week that trolls Minnesota Congressman Erik Paulsen by depicting Paulsen canoeing with Trump in a polluted lake. The ad explains how Paulsen, like Trump, has supported bills that allow coal companies to dump their waste and pollute our waterways. Paulsen attempted to trick voters into thinking he’s an environmentalist with an ad about canoeing in the Boundary Waters, despite voting against funding for programs that support it.
DIRTY DOZEN LIST GROWS: The Dirty Dozen list is growing as the midterms near, calling out the worst candidates who pose threats to our water, air, land and health that LCV Victory Fund and our state affiliates are working to defeat. This week, we’ve added new names to our first-ever House Dirty Dozen list, our Senate Dirty Dozen list, and Dirty Dozen in the States.
IN THE SENATE: This week, LCV Victory Fund added Nevada Senator Dean Heller to our annual Dirty Dozen list of the most anti-environmental candidates running for office. His selection rounds out the first half of this notorious list. Heller earned a zero percent score on LCV’s 2017 National Environmental Scorecard, and since Trump took office, he has voted for every single one of Congress’s environmental attacks — a staggering 26 votes against clean air, clean water, renewable energy and public lands.
IN THE HOUSE: LCV Victory Fund also added two new members to our inaugural House Dirty Dozen: Kansas Congressman Kevin Yoder and Iowa Congressman Rod Blum. Yoder has a long history of questioning climate science, which is reflected in his lifetime 3 percent LCV score. The polluter-promoting elected official consistently votes to dismantle protections for clean air and water. Similarly, Blum is a climate change skeptic who doesn’t trust scientists, who routinely votes against the environment, and who is currently under investigation for failing to disclose his shady business practices.
IN THE STATES: This week, our state LCVs also named two more members to Dirty Dozen in the States – a list of the most anti-environmental candidates running for state-level office. Connecticut State Senator Len Suzio and Florida State Senator Keith Perry are the latest additions.
CONGRESSIONAL FAILURE: On September 30, the Republican-led Congress let funding for America’s best parks program – the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) – expire. LWCF has funneled more than $3.9 billion into state grants and protected 2.37 million acres of public land, funding everything from national parks to local, neighborhood baseball fields. Public lands drive our economy, which is a large part of why LWCF has consistently received strong, bipartisan support.
CALLING ON CONGRESS: Lawmakers, conservation groups, and voters took to Twitter this week, calling on Congress to #SaveLWCF and discussing why it is so important for their communities.
TALKING THE TALK, FAILING TO WALK: Dozens of House Republicans signed onto a bill to reauthorize — but not fund — LWCF, yet they failed to push Speaker Ryan for a floor vote before the deadline. House leadership spent the last month giving their most vulnerable members floor votes on priority legislation, yet none of them pushed for LWCF to be a priority. Looking at you, Mike Coffman, Greg Gianforte, Scott Tipton and Brian Mast.
DIRTY POWER SCAM: This summer, the Trump administration announced its plans to rollback the Clean Power Plan, putting thousands of more lives at risk per year. On this critical issue, they are only holding one public hearing. This week, in Chicago, LCV’s Sara Chieffo spoke at the hearing against this Dirty Power Scam, pointing out that “this administration’s analysis admits that the draft plan we’re discussing today will lead to 1,400 deaths in 2030. This is simply unacceptable. The EPA can and must do better. The reality is that the scale of the climate crisis means the Clean Power Plan should be made stronger, not gutted.”
MERCURY IN THE AIR: In yet another attack on our clean air, the Trump administration is proposing to weaken a rule that limits the amount of mercury and other toxic emissions that nuclear plants release. Mercury’s catastrophic health effects include nervous system damage in children and fetuses — yet the Trump administration had the nerve to make the announcement on National Child Health Day.
EPA ATTACKS AGAIN: The Trump administration announced they will be weakening regulations on radiation because of a few outlier scientific studies that claim a little radiation is healthy. This ridiculous change could be very dangerous, increasing exposure and cancer risks for communities living near Superfund sites and workers at hospitals, nuclear facilities, and oil and gas drilling sites..
IGNORING CLIMATE CHANGE: In his revisions to NAFTA, which came out this week, Trump completely erased climate from the agreement – the words “climate” and “warming” aren’t even in the document. In another revision, Trump’s EPA removed language about the impacts of climate change on children. This omittance was part of weakening how hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, are regulated in cooling units. Once again, Trump is showing all he really cares about today are polluters.
THIS WEEKEND — Expected Brett Kavanaugh Senate floor vote
NOVEMBER 6 — Election Day!