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Protesters advocating for Democratic support for the Green New Deal. Photo: Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

A suite of groups on the environmental movement's left flank are out with a new open letter to House members about their legislative goals around climate change.

Why it matters: The statement endorsed by groups including Friends of the Earth and 350.org is an early sign of efforts to influence the shape of the Green New Deal (and climate policy more broadly).

What they're saying: The letter calls for various aggressive and "visionary" measures they say are needed to hold the global temperature rise to 1.5°C, such as...

  • Ending fossil fuel leasing on public lands and halting approval of fossil fuel infrastructure.
  • Moving the country to 100% renewable electricity by 2035 at the latest.
  • Decarbonizing transportation with major investments in public transit, and phasing out sales of internal combustion vehicles.
  • Using the "full power" of the Clean Air Act by setting strict deadlines for emissions cuts from transportation, smokestacks and other sources.

The groups behind the letter include the Center for Biological Diversity, the Climate Justice Alliance, the Indigenous Environmental Network, Food & Water Watch, Oil Change USA and more.

  • All told, several hundred groups — a tally that includes a large number of local organizations — signed on.
  • Yes, but: It does not include a number of the largest players in climate politics, like the Sierra Club, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Environmental Defense Fund.

The big picture: It's part of a wider effort to both lay down markers and eventually craft policy specifics around the plan, both in Congress and on the campaign trail.

  • A spokesperson for the Sunrise Movement, a group at the forefront of the Green New Deal push that also signed the new letter, tells me they've been meeting with the campaigns of 2020 White House hopefuls.

The intrigue: One notable omission from the new letter is a call for carbon taxes or other forms of carbon pricing.

  • 350.org's Jamie Henn says his organization feels the letter is aimed at promoting ideas that are often missing or downplayed in Washington.
  • He says it's not a statement against carbon pricing, but does signal that progressives don't see pricing as the central pillar of cutting emissions to the degree needed.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Inhofe loudly sets Trump straight on defense bill

Sen. Jim Inhofe speaks with reporters in the Capitol last month. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Senator Jim Inhofe told President Trump today he'll likely fail to get two big wishes in pending defense spending legislation, bellowing into his cellphone: "This is the only chance to get our bill passed," a source who overheard part of their conversation tells Axios.

Why it matters: Republicans are ready to test whether Trump's threats of vetoing the bill, which has passed every year for more than half a century, are empty.

Conspiracy theories blow back on Trump's White House

Sidney Powell. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

President Trump has rarely met a conspiracy theory he doesn't like, but he and other Republicans now worry the wild tales told by lawyers Sidney Powell and Lin Wood may cost them in Georgia's Senate special elections.

Why it matters: The two are telling Georgians not to vote for Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler because of a bizarre, baseless and potentially self-defeating theory: It's not worth voting because the Chinese Communist Party has rigged the voting machines.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Bolton lauds Barr for standing up to Trump

John Bolton. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

John Bolton says Attorney General Bill Barr has done more to undercut President Trump's baseless assertions about Democrats stealing the election than most Senate Republicans by saying publicly that the Justice Department has yet to see widespread fraud that could change the election's outcome.

What he's saying: “He stood up and did the right thing," Bolton said in a Wednesday phone interview.