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NYLCV Endorses U.S. House Members for 2018 Cycle

We are excited to announce our first round of endorsements in the 2018 Congressional election cycle.

The endorsements were made by the State Board members using responses to the NYLCV questionnaire that highlights environmental issues and in the case of incumbents, ratings from the National LCV Environmental Scorecard that grades votes by members of Congress.  The questionnaire includes questions regarding climate change, public health, clean water, and the conservation of land. This year, the organization made 15 endorsements in U.S. House races of candidates with outstanding environmental records. An endorsement in the U.S. Senate race will be made by the board of directors in July.

NYLCV will make endorsements in the 2018 state elections later this summer.  These endorsements will be based on a separate questionnaire as well as the organization’s forthcoming NYLCV 2018 State Legislative Environmental Scorecard.  The bills selected for the scorecard include legislation on Drug Take Back programs, toxic chemicals in children’s products, pollinator-friendly solar arrays, and disposable bag waste reduction.  Legislators will be scored based on their co-sponsorship and votes on these bills.

“As our Executive Branch in Washington is taking regressive actions that hurt our environment, these candidates are leading the way on conservation and sustainability.  These candidates have repeatedly demonstrated their commitment to the goals of NYLCV and dedication to protecting the environment and we urge all voters to support these candidates in their upcoming election.  I also look forward to making seeing support for environmental and conservation legislation from our state legislators as part of our state legislative scorecard,” said our President Marcia Bystryn.

The endorsed candidates include:

Tom Suozzi – District 3

Congressman Suozzi made great strides in helping to protect the environment since he was elected in 2016. Suozzi is co-chair of the Long Island Sound Caucus, where he leads a Long Island Sound conference and secured $8 million for the Long Island Sound Study. He also secured $34 million to clean up the Navy/Grumman plume that is polluting Nassau County’s groundwater. Further, as a former Nassau County executive and City of Glen Cove Mayor, his extensive local government experience with the critical environmental issues facing Long Island well prepared him to tackle an array of complex federal issues dealing with water, air, land, and energy matters in Congress, earning him a near perfect score of 97% on the 2017 National LCV Scorecard.

Kathleen Rice – District 4

Congresswoman Rice was elected into office in 2015 and has made conservation efforts one of her main priorities since. She plans to focus on cutting carbon emissions, making investments in clean energy sources and working to combat climate change. Rice has voted repeatedly in support of cutting carbon pollution, strengthening protections for clean air and water, and defending the assaults of the Trump administration on environmental laws and institutions earning a perfect 100% on the 2017 National LCV Scorecard and a lifetime average of 95%.

Grace Meng – District 6

Congresswoman Meng has made it a priority to fight for a number of environmental issues. Each year, she writes a letter in an effort to protect international conservation and combat wildlife trafficking. This past year, it was signed by more than 70 of her colleagues. Further, she sponsored the Carbon Capture Prize Act, to authorize the Secretary of Energy to establish a prize competition for the research, development, or commercialization of technology that would reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. Meng has also sponsored efforts to protect the Long Island Sound, Delaware River Basin, the Red Rock Wilderness and the Arctic. Meng earned a perfect 100% on the 2017 National LCV Scorecard and a lifetime average of 96%.

Nydia Velázquez – District 7

District 7 is the only district in the state with three Superfund sites and thanks to Congresswoman Velázquez, they are getting the funding they need to properly clean up the toxic pollution affecting her communities. She is a member of the bipartisan climate solutions caucus and has authorized legislation to protect the EPA from cutting staff. She has also been an advocate for limiting carbon pollution, and the EPA’s ability to do so. Recently, she has also introduced the Pesticide Protection Act of 2017, a bill to end the sale of Chlorpyrifos, a pesticide that is used on corn, wheat, apples and citrus and that is harmful to children. Her continued support of environmentalism has earned Velazquez earned a perfect 100% on the 2017 scorecard, with a lifetime score of 93%.

Hakeem Jeffries – District 8

Congressman Jeffries has worked hard to protect the environment and conserve wildlife since elected in 2013. He introduced, fought for, and eventually won house passage for his legislation, the Keep America’s Refuges Operational Act, to reauthorize the National Wildlife Refuge System Volunteer, Community Partnership, and Education Program, which provides a cost-effective way to maintain conservation of habitats and wildlife. Jefferies earned a 97% on the 2017 scorecard, giving him a lifetime average of 96%.

Yvette Clarke – District 9

Since her election in 2006, Congresswoman Clarke has supported environmental regulations including those regarding safe drinking water, the conservation of land, and standards for greenhouse gas emissions. She currently serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee and is an advocate for the EPA’s Clean Power Plan. Due to Clarke’s advocacy of environmental regulations, she has received a 97% on the 2017 scorecard, with a lifetime score of 94%.

Jerrold Nadler – District 10

Congressman Nadler has made transportation infrastructure and public transit one of his legislative priorities by leading a national fight to increase federal funding for mass transit. He also has advocated for effective sustainable goods and introduced the Clean Ports Act to ensure that ports can enact and enforce Clean Truck programs. As a member of the Sustainable Energy and Environmental Coalition, Nadler is an advocate for environmental justice and hopes to make sure the EPA responds quickly to major environmental disasters. He has received a perfect 100% on our 2017 scorecard, with a lifetime average of 96%.

Carolyn Maloney – District 12

Congresswoman Maloney has been an avid supporter of many pieces of environmental legislation including the National Estuary Program, Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act, National Estuary Program, and Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan just to name a few. She is also a member of the Safe Climate Caucus, and advocates for American energy independence, and protection for our public lands. Maloney has received a 97% on the 2017 scorecard, with a 95% lifetime average.

Adriano Espaillat – District 13

Since his election in 2016, Congressman Espaillat has co-sponsored numerous conservation-related bills, including legislation to encourage clean energy, reduce the use of pesticides, and keep drinking water safe. Espaillat is a strong supporter in the United States re-entering the Paris Climate Agreement, and an advocate for the belief in scientific evidence, regarding the reality of climate change. He received a 97% on our scorecard this year.

Joseph Crowley – District 14

Since his election in 1998, Congressman Crowley has supported many programs including the Clean Air Act, 100 by ‘50 Act, the Stop Arctic Ocean Drilling Act, and more.  His 100% score on our environmental scorecard is backed-up with a record of support for legislation including the Hudson-Raritan Estuary Comprehensive Restoration Plan and his introduction of the Bike-to-Work Act.  

Eliot Engel – District 16

Congressman Engel has secured positions of leadership and top memberships in numerous environmentally-minded committees including the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Oil and National Security Caucus.  He has advocated for a cleaner, healthier environment for New Yorkers and all Americans. He authored and passed nearly two dozen amendments to bills including requiring federal-owned or leased vehicles to use alternative fuel options. He has earned a high average ranking of 97% on National LCV’s 2017 National Environmental Scorecard.

Nita Lowey – District 17

Focusing on the Clean Water Act, Congresswoman Lowey has worked protect our waterways. She has secured funding to protect the Hudson River and Long Island Sound as a ranking Democratic member of the House Appropriations Committee, earning her a perfect 100% on the 2017 scorecard, with a lifetime average of 94%. Further, Lowey has advocated that the EPA clean polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) from the Upper Hudson River, and has consistently protected federal funding for the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area. She also worked to ensure access to clean drinking water by fighting proposals that would overdevelop and pollute lakes, rivers, and waterways.

Sean Patrick Maloney – District 18

Since elected in 2012, Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney has worked to ensure that the polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) clean-up on the Hudson River is implemented properly, as well as securing funding for cleaning-up water contamination in Newburgh. This work has earned him a 94% on the 2017 scorecard.  He also sponsored the Young and Beginning Farmers Act, to improve the ability of beginning farmers in the United States to acquire farms and participate in agricultural production.

Paul Tonko – District 20

As a ranking member of the Subcommittee on the Environment, within the Energy and Commerce Committee, Congressman Tonko has been a great environmental advocate. Among his accomplishments, he introduced the Green Bank Act of 2017, to create a National Green Bank that will deliver financial support to encourage private investment in local clean-energy and energy-efficient projects through regional, state and local green banks. He also introduced bipartisan legislation that would increase federal research and development investments in the energy efficiency of gas turbines currently being used to generate electricity across the U.S. Tonko has received a 97% lifetime average on the scorecard, with a 100% in 2017.

Anthony Brindisi – District 22

As a current member of the New York State Assembly, Anthony Brindisi has been a strong advocate for public health and clean water, especially regarding the cleanliness of drinking water, earning him an 81% on the 2017 NYLCV State Environmental scorecard.  He has worked to raise awareness of the potentially cancer-causing chemicals in the public water supply and sponsored legislation to ban toxic chemicals used in the manufacturing of furniture. His opponent is incumbent Claudia Tenney (R) who has one of the worst environmental voting records in Congress as evidenced by her 6% score on the 2017 LCV scorecard.

Brian Higgins – District 26

Since his election in 2004, Congressman Higgins has worked for regulations to protect the environment and our waterways, focusing on the Great Lakes. He introduced both the Great Lakes Nutrient Removal Assistance Act and the Water Resources Development Act. Further, he has worked to create green jobs by introducing the National Building Here at Home Act, which created jobs by rebuilding America’s infrastructure. Higgins received a 100% on the 2017 scorecard, with a lifetime average of 95%.