Monday August 3rd, 2020 8:11PM

Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez set to rally to boost Green New Deal

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Green New Deal has been blocked in the Senate, and Democratic House leaders refuse to take it up, but activists and politicians who back the sweeping plan to address climate change are pushing to make it a top issue in the 2020 campaign.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York will headline a rally Monday night at Howard University that also features Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Varshini Prakash, executive director of the Sunrise Movement, the group behind the Green New Deal.

The rally comes as Sanders and others seeking the Democratic presidential nomination criticize former Vice President Joe Biden over his yet-to-be-released climate plan. Published reports suggest Biden is seeking "middle ground" on climate, an approach Sanders rejected as timid.

"There is no 'middle ground' when it comes to climate policy," Sanders tweeted Friday. "If we don't commit to fully transforming our energy system away from fossil fuels, we will doom future generations."

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, who has made climate change the centerpiece of his presidential bid, called climate change an urgent crisis, adding, "'Middle-ground' approaches and half measures won't cut it. We need a large-scale national mobilization to defeat climate change and grow millions of jobs in a clean energy economy."

Ocasio-Cortez, the chief House author of the Green New Deal, called Biden's reported approach "a dealbreaker" in a tweet and said there can be no "middle ground" on climate.

"We're not going to solve the climate crisis w/ this lack of leadership," she wrote. "Our kids' lives are at stake."

For his part, Biden chafed at reports that he's considering a less ambitious approach to climate change than many of his rivals have endorsed, but he also expressed skepticism at the Green New Deal.

"We do need to finish this green revolution in a way that is rational, that we can do it, afford it and get it done now," he said Monday in New Hampshire. "There's so much we can do."

Biden said he would be making a "major speech" to detail his environmental policy by the end of the month.

The Green New Deal, introduced to great fanfare by Markey and Ocasio-Cortez, calls for shifting the U.S. away from fossil fuels such as oil and coal and replacing them with renewable sources such as wind and solar power.

The plan calls for virtual elimination by 2030 of greenhouse gas emissions responsible for global warming and meeting 100 percent of U.S. power demand through renewable and zero-emission energy sources, including nuclear power. The proposal has broad support among Democratic activists and 2020 presidential contenders, putting it at the forefront of the party's sprawling presidential primary.

Republicans say the plan would devastate the economy and lead to a huge tax increase. They call it more evidence of the creep of "socialism" in the Democratic Party, along with "Medicare for All" and a sweeping elections reform package that would allow public financing of congressional campaigns.

Senators including Markey and Sanders unanimously shunned a chance to take up the Green New Deal in March. Democrats called the vote scheduled by GOP leaders a political stunt, since Republicans widely oppose the plan, and declined to support a procedural motion to consider the nonbinding resolution.

The vote carried its own political risk for Republicans by appearing to mock climate change, an issue that a growing number of Americans care deeply about.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., meanwhile, has rejected calls to schedule a vote on the plan and has given no timetable for when or if it will reach the House floor.

About 1,500 people are expected to attend Monday night's rally, which also will feature remarks by author Naomi Klein; Alexandra Rojas, executive director of Justice Democrats; and activist Rhiana Gunn-Wright.

Organizers promise a nationwide campaign to make the 2020 election a referendum on the Green New Deal, with a "major demonstration" planned at a Democratic presidential debate in Detroit in July.


Associated Press writer Bill Barrow in New Hampshire contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News, AP Elections - Campaigns
© Copyright 2020
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
The Latest: 4 detained in hip-hop shooting released
Police say four men detained after a shooting tied to a Miami-area hip-hop festival have been released
6:07PM ( 12 minutes ago )
Burgeoning numbers of Cubans trying to enter US via Mexico
Burgeoning numbers of Cubans are trying to get into the U.S. by way of the Mexican border, creating a big backlog of people waiting on the Mexican side for months for their chance to apply for asylum
6:00PM ( 20 minutes ago )
Memorial service planned for Colorado school shooting hero
A memorial service is planned for a student hailed as a hero for tackling one of two teenage gunmen who attacked his suburban Denver school
5:49PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump says he won't use info stolen by adversaries in 2020
President Donald Trump is pledging not to use information stolen by foreign adversaries in his 2020 reelection campaign, even though he did in 2016
5:29PM ( 51 minutes ago )
China retaliates on tariffs, stock markets go into a slide
China boosts tariffs on $60 billion of US goods, hitting back against Trump's tariff hike
5:11PM ( 1 hour ago )
2020 hopeful Biden says he's open to breaking up Facebook
Joe Biden says he is open to breaking up technology giants like Facebook and is praising Sen. Elizabeth Warren, his rival for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination who is championing such a policy
5:11PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Albania protesters hurl firebombs after calls for restraint
Anti-government protesters in Albania have hurled firebombs and flares at riot officers standing in front of the main government building and national police headquarters, hours after the U.S. and European Union lawmakers called for restraint
2:28PM ( 3 hours ago )
Maryland gov signs 1st-in-nation measure to help uninsured
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan signed a first-in-the-nation measure to help people without health insurance find out if they qualify for free or low-cost insurance after they file their taxes
2:25PM ( 3 hours ago )
Expert: San Francisco face ID ban would be warning to police
Skeptics of face recognition say an outright ban of the technology in San Francisco would send a strong warning to police
2:08PM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Warren says she'd appoint former teacher to education post
Elizabeth Warren is pledging that if she's elected president, her secretary of education "will be a former public school teacher who is committed to public education."
12:48PM ( 5 hours ago )
Julián Castro makes universal pre-K focus of education plan
Democratic presidential candidate Julián Castro is joining other 2020 contenders in calling for free public college tuition and expanding forgiveness for student loans
12:23PM ( 5 hours ago )
Turkish electoral body rejects opposition demand in Istanbul
Turkey's electoral board has rejected a demand by opposition parties to annul local election results in Istanbul's 39 districts, following the board's controversial decision to strip the opposition of its victory in the metropolitan mayor race
9:54AM ( 8 hours ago )
AP Elections
Booker plays up Vegas connection in crucial Nevada caucus
Cory Booker rose to national fame as a New Jersey mayor and senator, but his mom and other relatives have lived in Las Vegas for years
11:25AM ( 1 day ago )
Buttigieg describes his coming out, need to bridge divides
Pete Buttigieg described his public coming out as a gay man and how exclusion he experiences made him conscious of what it means to belong and the need to tear down walls that divide Americans
1:18AM ( 1 day ago )
Trump says voters don't care about his personal tax returns
President Donald Trump is scoffing at Democrats' attempts to pry loose his tax returns, saying his refusal to release the records as a candidate didn't hurt him in 2016 and voters "didn't care" about the issue
3:03PM ( 2 days ago )
General Election News
Suddenly starless Wisconsin GOP plots rebuild for 2020
Republicans in Wisconsin are determined to deliver their key battleground to President Donald Trump in 2020, but they know they've got some rebuilding work to do
9:35AM ( 1 day ago )
Self-impeach? Talk shifts toward Trump defiance of Congress
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has introduced a new concept into the debate over President Donald Trump's actions: "self-impeaching."
3:57PM ( 2 days ago )
South Africa's ruling ANC marks weakest election victory
South Africa's ruling ANC marks weakest election victory amid anger over corruption scandals
2:17PM ( 2 days ago )
General Presidential Election News
Voting in Indian elections reaches next-to-last phase
Indians are voting in the next-to-last round of 6-week-long national elections, marked by a highly acrimonious campaign with Prime Minister Narendra Modi flaying the opposition Congress party rival Rahul Gandhi for the country's ills
2:45AM ( 1 day ago )
Democratic presidential candidates embrace staff unionizing
Facing pressure to match their campaign rhetoric with action, a number of Democratic presidential hopefuls are expressing support for their staff forming unions
8:32PM ( 3 days ago )
Spokesman: Biden would welcome campaign staff forming union
Former Vice President Joe Biden would embrace a union if his campaign aides want to organize
4:55PM ( 4 days ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
The Latest: 4 detained in hip-hop shooting released
Police say four men detained after a shooting tied to a Miami-area hip-hop festival have been released
6:07PM ( 13 minutes ago )
Memorial service planned for Colorado school shooting hero
A memorial service is planned for a student hailed as a hero for tackling one of two teenage gunmen who attacked his suburban Denver school
5:49PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Down 2-0, 'Canes seek special-teams spark against Boston
Down 2-0, 'Canes seek special-teams spark against Boston
5:47PM ( 33 minutes ago )
California sues US over home health worker union dues
Five states have joined forces to try and block a new rule from the Trump administration they say weakens labor unions and their ability to collectively bargain for wages and benefits.
5:47PM ( 34 minutes ago )
Police investigating rappers' ties to shootings around Miami
A weekend of shootings involving rap musicians and their entourages in South Florida for a huge hip-hop festival left two people dead and four wounded
5:43PM ( 37 minutes ago )