Climate Politics

Big Environmental Stakes in the Big Sky State

Their records put the two Senate candidates far apart on environmental issues.

The current Supreme Court vacancy is a reminder of just how crucial the Senate is.  If there were two more Democratic Senators there today, Trump would not be able to fill Ginsburg’s seat before the election. Of course, the Senate matters for other reasons, too.  An example of the importance of the Senate in policy …

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Battle for the Senate: Alabama

Losing this seat would make it much harder to build a pro-environmental majority.

By all accounts, Doug Jones is the most endangered incumbent Democratic Senators. He won in something of a fluke in a special election, after reports surfaced that his opponent had stalked teenage girls. Now he faces a tough reelection battle. If he loses, it becomes that much more difficult to slip enough seats for a …

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Battle for the Senate: Iowa

The Iowa race features two candidates with very different views about climate change.

The Senate race in Iowa pits incumbent Joni Ernst against Democrat Theresa Greenfield.  Climate change is the area where the two contrast most strongly. Greenfield accepts the science and calls for action. Ernst is still in the “maybe it relates to a little bit to humans” phase of climate denial. She also says she’s “so …

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When Republicans Supported the Environment: Bush 41

The GOP wasn’t always the sworn enemy of environmental protection.

Younger people today probably know about George Herbert Walker Bush (R) as the father of George W. Bush and (perhaps) as the architect of the first Iraq War. But he also had some notable environmental achievements to his credit. Here are some of his accomplishments: Air Pollution Law. The 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments were …

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North Carolina: A Tight Senate Race with High Environmental Stakes

Control of the Senate may hang in the balance.

In the Tar Heel State, Republican Incumbent Thom Tillis faces a tough face against challenger Cal Cunningham. This race is central to Democratic hopes to flip the Senate. The candidates have contrasting environmental views. Thom Tillis. When Tillis ran in 2014, his main claim to fame was championing deregulation in the North Carolina legislature, which …

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Battle for the Senate: Colorado

A Republican who’s expressing support for the environment, versus a Democrat who wants to do a lot more.

The Colorado Senate race pits incumbent Republican Cory Gardner against John Hickenlooper.  Gardner makes a point of stressing his support for environmental protection and has apparently been working hard to strengthen his environment record since he moved to the Senate in 2014. Cory Gardner.  Gardner’s Senate website touts his bipartisanship. It says that he “was …

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Battle for the Senate: Too Close to Call in Maine

Control of the Senate may hinge on this race.

The 2020 Senate race pits Republican incumbent Susan Collins against Sarah Gideon. Collins is far more environment-friendly than her GOP colleagues. That still makes her much less so than Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.) on the other side of the aisle. In contrast, Gideon supports much stronger climate action. Susan Collins. Collins is an outlier among …

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Election 2020: The Battle for the Senate

Whatever happens to the White House, control of the Senate will be crucial.

Today, I’ll look at how key races have shifted in the past six month, and why this matters for environmental law. We’ve just finished the Democratic Convention, and the GOP Convention is underway. But control of the Senate may be equally important.It’s crucial to any president’s legislative agenda and judicial appointments. Senate control gives an …

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Coal Takes a Nosedive

Despite Trump’s efforts to save it, the most environmentally destructive fuel is fading quickly.

In the 2016 election, Trump pledged to save coal. Since then, his Administration has pulled out all the stops in this effort, including repeal of dozens of environmental regulations.  All for naught. In 2021, U.S. coal use will be 30% below what it is when Trump took office. Coal’s immediate situation is even worse, due …

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The Draft Democratic Platform and the Environment

The Democrats are promising bold climate action but not committing to details.

The Republicans have decided not to update their 2016 platform, but the Democrats now have a draft of their 2020 platform. The platform essentially calls for aggressively moving beyond Obama’s actions (and eliminating Trump’s).  For those who are in a rush, I’ll start with the takeaways. Key Points Here are some of the most important aspects …

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