May 13, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Democratic campaign vets unveil 2020 climate push

A new group staffed by veterans of Democratic politics and advocacy is launching today with the aim of "changing the politics of climate in 2020" — especially in swing states.

Why it matters: The launch of Climate Power 2020 represents both a new effort to put President Trump on the defensive but also to lay the groundwork for Democrats to prioritize climate policy during and after the election campaign.

Who they are: The executive director of the group is Lori Lodes, who comes from Apple but worked on Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign. She worked on healthcare in the Obama administration and later in advocacy.

  • Others include Sarah Baron, who worked on Elizabeth Warren's presidential campaign; as well as former aides from the campaigns of Pete Buttigieg and Michael Bloomberg; and former Democratic congressional aides.

How it works: The group is national in scope but will focus on Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

  • It's set up as an independent project created by the Center for American Progress Action Fund, the League of Conservation Voters, and the Sierra Club.

The big picture: "By elevating the climate crisis in national and state conversations and aggressively putting the Trump administration on defense for selling our future to his special interest friends, Climate Power 2020 will build the momentum necessary for bold action in 2021," the announcement states.

The intrigue: It combines longtime, establishment climate movement figures with elements of the new guard.

  • Advisory board members range from the veteran Democratic political player John Podesta to Rhiana Gunn-Wright, a prominent figure in the Green New Deal movement who is currently with the Roosevelt Institute.
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