Jan 31, 2019

Exclusive: Ocasio-Cortez, Markey to unveil Green New Deal bill

Amy Harder, author of Generate

Sen. Ed Markey and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Photos: Scott Eisen via Getty Images; Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) are set to unveil legislation laying out a “Green New Deal” as soon as next week, Axios has learned.

Driving the news: A spokeswoman for Markey confirmed the offices are working on legislation, but said there is no final text and timing isn’t final yet for next week. A request to Ocasio-Cortez’s office wasn’t immediately returned. Varshini Prakash, co-founder of the Sunrise Movement, also said legislation is due as soon as Wednesday or Thursday of next week. The youth-led group has been at the forefront of the Green New Deal movement.

The big picture: The Green New Deal is a set of vague, but broad progressive policy goals seeking to transform the economy in the name of fighting climate change. It has risen from obscurity to prominence since the November election, with Ocasio-Cortez, a rising progressive star, leading the charge. Democrats eyeing presidential runs — including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris — are backing the general concept of the Green New Deal, which is sure to play a role in the 2020 primary.

Details: It’s unclear to what extent the proposal will adhere to a draft legislative document circulating that describes the policy, which dates back to Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign website.

  • That document includes a goal of 100% renewable electricity within 10 years (up from 17% today), a federal jobs guarantee for people working in the low-carbon transition, and universal healthcare.
  • It’s light on details on how that would be funded and is also silent on whether the policy includes a price on carbon dioxide emissions, long considered central to climate change policy.

Between the lines: The two Democrats leading the proposal represent a bridge between the old and new guard progressives. Markey was co-author of the last big climate-change legislation Congress considered a decade ago, while Ocasio-Cortez is the highest profile member of a new crop of House progressives.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 21 mins ago - Politics & Policy

George Floyd protests: Unrest continues for 6th night across U.S.

A protest near the White House on Sunday night. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Most external White House lights were turned off late Sunday as the D.C. National Guard was deployed to assist and authorities fired tear gas at hundreds of protesters nearby, per the New York Times.

What's happening: It's one of several tense, late-night standoffs between law enforcement and demonstrators.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Journalists get caught in the crosshairs as protests unfold

A man waves a Black Lives Matter flag atop the CNN logo outside the CNN Center during a protest in response to the police killing of George Floyd, Atlanta, Georgia, May 29. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Dozens of journalists across the country tweeted videos Saturday night of themselves and their crews getting arrested, being shot at by police with rubber bullets, targeted with tear gas by authorities or assaulted by protesters.

Driving the news: The violence got so bad over the weekend that on Sunday the Cleveland police said the media was not allowed downtown unless "they are inside their place of business" — drawing ire from news outlets around the country, who argued that such access is a critical part of adequately covering protests.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Tanker truck plows into Minneapolis protesters

The tanker after plowing into protesters on the shut-down bridge in Minneapolis on Sunday evening. Authorities said it appeared protesters escaped injury. Photo: Jeff Wheeler/Star Tribune via Getty Images

Minnesota authorities said in a statement they're investigating as a criminal matter what happened with a truck that "drove into demonstrators" on a Minneapolis bridge Sunday evening while the eight-lane road was closed for a protest.

What they're saying: Minnesota Department of Public Safety tweeted, "Very disturbing actions by a truck driver on I-35W, inciting a crowd of peaceful demonstrators. The truck driver was injured & taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He is under arrest. It doesn't appear any protesters were hit by the truck."