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.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Aug 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Feud over fossil fuel subsidies spotlights Democrats' climate fissures

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Joe Biden's campaign is emphasizing that he really, really doesn't like subsidies for fossil fuels at a time when climate activists are blasting the removal of anti-subsidy language from the Democratic National Committee platform.

What they're saying: "[Joe Biden] continues to be committed to ending U.S. fossil fuel subsidies [and] then rallying the rest of the world to do the same — as was outlined in his climate plan last year," Biden policy director Stef Feldman tweeted Wednesday.

Aug 21, 2020 - Technology

The tech workers boosting down-ballot Democrats

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Some 13,500 tech workers with day jobs at companies like Facebook, Google, Netflix and Disney are volunteering in their spare time to help down-ballot Democratic candidates in competitive state-level races with digital tools and marketing.

Why it matters: Democrats in recent years have fared worse at harnessing technology to their advantage in campaigning, treating campaigns less like a business than their Republican counterparts. The stakes are higher in building a tech-savvy campaign in 2020's incredibly competitive landscape.

Newsom addresses DNC from site of California wildfires: "Climate change is real"

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) used his Democratic National Convention address on Thursday to highlight the real-world effects of climate change, speaking just a mile from the site of one of the over 370 wildfires that are currently ravaging his state.

What he's saying: "Well, I confess this is not where I expected to be speaking here tonight," said Newsom, who was originally set to speak at the DNC but remained in California to monitor the fires. "We are just coming off a record heat wave that led to 130 degree temperatures — the highest temperature ever recorded in California."

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