Battleground States Support Clean Energy

Joanna Schroeder

According to new poll results in eight battleground states, there is widespread support for the Clean Power Plan. This week the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released final rules. Overall, 58 percent support the plan while 40 percent oppose it after hearing arguments for and against the plan. States polled included Virginia, Florida, Ohio, New Hampshire, Colorado, Nevada, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania.

AUFCLogoWideWebDuring a press conference releasing the poll results held by Americans United for Change who commissioned the research, climate advocates called on Republican Attorney Generals preparing to sue the EPA over the new public health standards and the “do-nothing Republicans in Congress” to stop putting polluters over people and act on climate change.

Among the findings by Tom Jensen, Director of Public Policy Polling, in his summary memo include:

  • There is widespread support for the EPA’s new plan to limit carbon pollution from power plants. Voters in all states, age groups, Democrats and Independents support the Clean Power Plan. Overall, 58% support the plan, while 40% oppose it after hearing arguments for and against the plan.
  • Voters across all 8 swing states and in all age groups consider climate change a serious problem. Democrats (77/22) are very concerned about climate change, with independents (55/44) in agreement. 37% of Republicans consider it serious while 62% don’t. There are more Republicans concerned about climate change than Democrats who are unconcerned.
  • When asked if they agree with Mitch McConnell’s urging the states to ignore the EPA and not develop a plan to cut carbon pollution, the answer was a resounding no: only 31% think states should drag their feet on implementation of new clean power plans; 59% say states should move forward and develop a plan to reduce carbon pollution from power plants.
  • Supporting climate change measures isn’t a particularly risky move for members of Congress. 63% say they would either be more likely to support their member or it would make no difference if they supported the EPA’s Clean Power Plan. This holds true in each state surveyed. Even Republicans say they would either be more likely to support their members in the future or it would make no difference: 47% total compared to 43% who would be more likely to oppose.

Participants of the call included:

  • Brad Woodhouse, President, Americans United for Change
  • Tom Jensen, Director, Public Policy Polling (PPP)
  • Daniel Weiss, Senior Vice President for Campaigns, League of Conservation Voters
  • Debbie Sease, National Campaign Director for the Sierra Club
  • Christopher Hale, Executive Director, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good

Debbie Sease, National Campaign Director for the Sierra Club said of the results, “These polls make one thing crystal clear: anyone who is serious about winning an election in these key states must be serious about supporting the Clean Power Plan.”

Christopher Hale, Executive Director, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, added, “President Obama’s latest action addressing global climate change is something that Pope Francis and the Catholic Church can applaud. Care for creation is at the heart of the Christian and other faith traditions. Pope Francis spoke earlier this year about our global failure to live up to this mission. “Man has slapped God in the face,” the pope said. “We have taken possession of nature and Mother Earth. God always forgives; we men sometimes forgive; but nature never forgives. I believe that man has gone a bit too far. Thank God that today, many, many people are talking about it.” What so many politicians seems to misunderstand, but that Francis and the Church get is that protecting creation is first and foremost a religious issue. As presidential candidates from both parties gear up for 2016, perhaps it would be best if they spent less time lecturing Francis on what to talk about and spent more time heeding his words: “I beg the Lord to grant us more politicians who are genuinely disturbed by the state of society, the people, the lives of the poor!”

Listen to the full press conference here: CCP Battleground Poll Results Presser

Americans United for Change, Clean Energy, Clean Power Plan, Climate Change, Electricity, Environment