Climate Solutions Caucus talks climate change on the House floor
By Flannery Winchester
On Wednesday, November 1, 10 members of the Climate Solutions Caucus gave speeches on the floor of the House about the urgent threat of climate change and the need for bipartisan congressional action.
Participants included Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL), Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-CA), Rep. John Faso (R-NY), Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE), Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY), Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-CA), as well as caucus co-chairs Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) and Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL).
When co-chair Rep. Curbelo spoke, one of his messages was about the caucus itself. He sees the Climate Solutions Caucus as having three phases. Phase 1 was beginning the bipartisan conversation about climate solutions—bringing people to the table and growing membership. That phase was decidedly successful this year, as the caucus grew from around a dozen members to 60 members. Phase 2, he said, is blocking bad climate legislation, such as the Perry Amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act back in July. The caucus rallied and voted almost unanimously to defeat the amendment. Phase 3 will be to identify climate legislation that the bipartisan caucus members can all get behind.
Perhaps the speeches on Wednesday night can be thought of as a sort of Phase 2.5—raising the profile of the Climate Solutions Caucus and of climate change in Congress, preparing their colleagues and the country for Phase 3: serious climate legislation.
Here, we’ve rounded up videos of their messages from Wednesday night. Please share these videos on social media with the hashtags #SolutionsCaucus and #climatechange, and thank these representatives for their leadership. You can also share our Twitter Moment of highlights from the evening’s speeches and the enthusiastic reception from viewers. Enjoy!
Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL) – Introduction
Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-CA)
Rep. John Faso (R-NY)
Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR)
Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE)
Rep. Bacon couldn’t attend in person, but his comments were submitted to the record the following day. “It is hard to deny that our climate is changing,” he said in his statement. “Top defense authorities, such as Secretary Mattis, have been vocal on how climate change has affected the DoD’s threat assessments, resources, and operation readiness, but Congress must do more to combat this threat.”
“It is a priority of mine to have all members recognize the impacts of climate change and our role to leave a cleaner planet for our children and grandchildren,” he said. Read Rep. Bacon’s full remarks here.
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL)
Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY)
Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-CA)
Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL)
Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-CA)
Rep. Dan Lipinski – Closing