By Morgan Pinnell, Senior Manager
Today four states hold their primaries, with eight more states following later this month. As voters head to the polls all across the country, the overwhelming feeling is that they are angry and activated. The corruption, scandals, and bad policies from Washington are stirring Americans to get engaged in the midterm elections in greater numbers than we’ve seen in a long time.
As we’ve witnessed from the special elections in 2017 and 2018, the energy that began in the wake of the 2017 Women’s March has not dissipated and has now translated into tremendous voter engagement, an influx of new and diverse candidates, and a thirst for change across the country.
Voters don’t like what they see.
Voters want change on a variety of issues, especially the environment and climate change.
Efforts from President Trump and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s to dismantle EPA and our bedrock environmental protections, to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement, impose solar tariffs, and rollback other public health protections come in direct conflict with the opinions of voters, including many independents.
In response to an administration that seems hell-bent on rolling back hard-fought and effective environmental protections, and as a result of natural disasters like Hurricane Harvey that have been supercharged by climate change, concerns about climate change are at a three decade high.
Helping candidates talk about environmental issues that matter to their voters
While candidates are taking up an environment-focused mantle in greater numbers, some don’t even know how to begin that conversation. That’s why EDF Action is helping candidates navigate how to talk about clean energy, sea level rise, air pollution, public health, and more in this election cycle.
EDF Action Campaign Academy is a program that is tapping into this hunger for change. We’re helping first time and rookie candidates figure out how to embrace environmental protection and public health as bedrock principles and talk to voters about these issues in a way that is responsive to the unique contours of their districts and governing values.
We began talking to candidates about these issues since EDF Action Campaign Academy launched in December 2017. This year we are building on those conversations and rolling out a weekly series on a variety of pertinent campaign concerns—from developing a platform to raising money and ensuring your campaign’s digital security.
We are working with environment-focused candidates to help them run and win.
The time is right for candidates to reflect what a majority of voters believe and care about when it comes to energy and the environment.
As we watch the primaries today taking place from the South to the Midwest, candidates who are putting forward a pro-environment message are poised to do very well. With the midterms in November happening a little less than six months from now, we want to see these candidates bring the change to Washington and beyond.