NextGen Climate, the brainchild of major Democratic benefactor Tom Steyer, has promised to make climate change a key issue in the midterm elections. But you wouldn’t know that from watching the green group’s latest ad.
A television spot released by the organization on Wednesday sidesteps climate entirely and focuses squarely on jobs. The ad accuses Iowa Republican Senate hopeful Joni Ernst of promising to protect tax breaks that benefit companies responsible for shipping jobs abroad. It makes no mention of global warming or the environment.
The message marks a departure from what has been a strictly environmental refrain from the group until now. It may also signal the start of a broader push from the Steyer-backed organization as the midterms approach.
Global warming has never been a top voter priority. And environmental issues have long taken a back seat to the economy in polling on voter preference. In a survey conducted by Gallup in April, 47 percent of respondents cited economic woes as the most pressing problem facing the U.S., while only 1 percent chose the environment and air pollution.
Yet NextGen has nevertheless insisted that talking about climate change can drive voter turnout. The green group’s mission statement is to bring “climate change to the forefront of American politics.”
NextGen announced in May that it would support four pro-environment, Democratic Senate candidates in competitive races in Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, and New Hampshire as well as Democratic gubernatorial candidates in Florida, Maine, and Pennsylvania.
Don’t expect NextGen to stray too far, however. The ad is the first in a series of television spots that will link Ernst to the oil industry and claim that the candidate would cut support for thousands of clean-energy jobs in Iowa if she wins her election.
“We’re highlighting the fact that Ernst is in the pocket of big oil and special interests — the same crowd that’s fighting good-paying renewable jobs and doesn’t believe we need to take action on climate change,” a spokesperson for NextGen said when asked whether the ad spelled a change in strategy.
What We're Following See More »
Trump, in a statement: “Based on the fact that the Democratic nominating process is totally rigged and Crooked Hillary Clinton and Deborah Wasserman Schultz will not allow Bernie Sanders to win, and now that I am the presumptive Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second place finisher. ... I will wait to debate the first place finisher in the Democratic Party, probably Crooked Hillary Clinton, or whoever it may be.”
"It's about time for unity," said UAW President Dennis Williams. "We're endorsing Hillary Clinton. She's gotten 3 million more votes than Bernie, a million more votes than Donald Trump. She's our nominee." He called Sanders "a great friend of the UAW" while saying Trump "does not support the economic security of UAW families." Some 28 percent of UAW members indicated their support for Trump in an internal survey.
"Donald Trump on Thursday reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign. Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party's unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the convention."
"Clinton and Bernie Sanders "are now devoting additional money to television advertising. A day after Sanders announced a new ad buy of less than $2 million in the state, Clinton announced her own television campaign. Ads featuring actor Morgan Freeman as well as labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta will air beginning on Fridayin Fresno, Sacramento, and Los Angeles media markets. Some ads will also target Latino voters and Asian American voters. The total value of the buy is about six figures according to the Clinton campaign." Meanwhile, a new poll shows Sanders within the margin of error, trailing Clinton 44%-46%.