League of Conservation Voters Beefs Up With Climate Veteran

Democrats are getting an increased campaign boost from the League of Conservation Voters.
National Journal
Jason Plautz
July 2, 2014, 2:37 p.m.

The League of Con­ser­va­tion Voters, which is in the midst of a mul­ti­mil­lion-dol­lar cam­paign to elect cli­mate-friendly can­did­ates, has hired the Cen­ter for Amer­ic­an Pro­gress’s Daniel J. Weiss to over­see its cli­mate and elec­tions pro­gram.

Weiss, a three-dec­ade vet­er­an of the green scene, will over­see what the group is pledging will be a far-reach­ing and deep-pock­eted cam­paign. LCV and its af­fil­i­ates spent $14 mil­lion last cycle and ex­pect to top that this time around.

“Dan has the skills, cre­ativ­ity, and ex­per­i­ence to help us sup­port en­vir­on­ment­al cham­pi­ons and take on cli­mate-change den­iers,” said LCV pres­id­ent Gene Kar­p­in­ski. “We’re ex­cited to have him join our team at a time of un­pre­ced­en­ted growth and suc­cess for our or­gan­iz­a­tion.”

Weiss most re­cently served as a seni­or fel­low at CAP and the dir­ect­or of the group’s clean-en­ergy and cli­mate pro­gram. He also served as polit­ic­al dir­ect­or for the Si­erra Club for eight years, where he over­saw its then-re­cord $9 mil­lion En­vir­on­ment­al Voter Edu­ca­tion Cam­paign in 2000.

His hir­ing comes as big money is flow­ing from en­vir­on­ment­al in­terests ahead of the 2014 midterms. LCV’s Give Green cam­paign has already raised $3 mil­lion — a re­cord for the cam­paign — for can­did­ates in high-pro­file races like the Iowa and New Hamp­shire Sen­ate cam­paigns. And bil­lion­aire Tom Stey­er’s Nex­t­Gen Cli­mate aims to in­ject $100 mil­lion to de­feat Re­pub­lic­an can­did­ates in sev­en Sen­ate and gubernat­ori­al races.

Weiss, who star­ted at LCV Wed­nes­day, said he looked for­ward to com­ple­ment­ing Nex­t­Gen and oth­ers’ “ef­forts to also elect pro-cli­mate ac­tion can­did­ates and de­feat the cli­mate sci­ence den­iers.”

With Weiss de­part­ing, CAP has beefed up its en­ergy and cli­mate team this spring by hir­ing Greg Dot­son as vice pres­id­ent of en­ergy policy. Dot­son spent over 18 years as an aide to Rep. Henry Wax­man, the top Demo­crat on the En­ergy and Com­merce Com­mit­tee and former chair­man of that pan­el and the House Over­sight and Gov­ern­ment Re­form Com­mit­tee.

Ben Geman contributed to this article.
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