Jay Inslee Is Betting He Can Win the Presidency on Climate Change
The Washington governor believes his focus on the environment will resonate with voters. But can he persuade enough Americans to pay attention to him? ...
That’s where Jay Inslee thinks America is when it comes to climate change. And that’s why he’s going to run for president. The question is whether he can convince anyone else that he’s a big-enough player to be a serious candidate.
“When you’ve been working on something for over a decade, and now seeing people awakening to that, it’s just really gratifying and heartening,” the Washington governor recently told me, sitting in his private study on the top floor of the governor’s mansion. When it comes to climate change, there now appears to be “an appetite for someone who has credibility and a long track record and, most importantly, a vision statement. It’s changed to show an opening in a Democratic primary, I believe.”
Inslee has been on the expansive list of would-be Democratic presidential contenders since the 2016 election, mostly because he was then one of the few Democratic governors left in the country. He didn’t take the talk seriously at first, nor did anyone else, and he certainly wasn’t doing anything to help it along. But as the 2018 midterm campaigns came to an end, he read through searing international and federal climate-change assessments, took a trip to view the wildfire damage in California, and thought through the larger moment for the country—and he shifted.
Now “we’re laying the groundwork that would make this a feasible thing in the relatively short term,” Inslee told me.
If there is a new Democratic president come 2021, he or she will get pulled in all sorts of policy directions. Inslee says he has one priority: global warming. It’s not theoretical, or a cause just for tree huggers anymore. Putting off dealing with it for a year or two or kicking it to some new bipartisan commission won’t work, he says. He plans to focus on the threat that climate change poses to the environment and national security—the mega-storms and fires causing millions in damages, the weather changes that will cause mass migrations, the droughts that will devastate farmers in America and around the world.
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Defeated twice, a top climate change crusader has a wake-up call some Democrats won't want to hear
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, who is weighing a 2020 run, is rethinking the carbon tax approach to saving the planet. He believes his party should, too. ...
The initial attempt began outside the Inslee administration in 2016, when a group called Carbon WA led a campaign for a ballot measure, Initiative 732, that would have taxed carbon emissions and use the revenue to cut taxes elsewhere.
Supporters emphasized its political appeal. There is at least some support for the concept of a revenue-neutral carbon tax in conservative circles, since it doesn't entail an overall tax hike, and Carbon WA earned backing from three Republican state senators.
But the proposal also failed to garner support on the left, where activists favored using the additional revenue on investments to cut further emissions and to finance related "green jobs" in low-income communities. The national Sierra Club opposed 732 even as it acknowledged dissension among its members over the decision.
Inslee opposed it, too, in part over concerns that the revenue projections were off.
With the environmental community split, the measure garnered just 40 percent of the vote and lost every county outside of Seattle.
Jay Inslee is building his 2020 campaign around a more pragmatic approach to tackling climate change
THE BIG IDEA: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D), who is poised to formally announce that he is running for president as early as this week, has held elected office since before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, 29, was born.
Though he said it has felt lonely at times, the 68-year-old has been trying to do something about global warming for almost that entire time. He’s learned more from his failures than his successes. Now he hopes that Democratic primary voters come to value hard-earned wisdom.
Every 2020 candidate is talking extensively about climate change in his or her stump speech, but no one else has made it the central rationale for seeking the presidency. “I've got three grandkids, and I want them to experience what I have: salmon in the river, snow in the mountains, clean air and forests to hike in,” he said in an interview this weekend at the National Governors Association winter meeting. “It's all going to be degraded if we don't take this battle on.”
As a congressman, Inslee was a key player in the push for a cap-and-trade system 10 years ago. A bill passed in the House but stalled in the Senate, even though Democrats had a near-filibuster-proof majority.
Last March, Inslee fought hard but failed to enact the nation’s first carbon tax in Washington state. He couldn’t whip the votes to pass the bill through his state’s Democratic-controlled legislature. This past November, voters in his state rejected a ballot initiative to impose a carbon fee on fossil fuel emissions. A separate push he spearheaded to cap emissions was blocked in the courts.
Inslee said “perseverance” is his single greatest personal quality. “You have to realize it’s a necessary quality to achieve any major social change,” he said. “Suffragettes understood that. ... You have to just keep plugging away at it. Sometimes perseverance is more important than genius.”
https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/4 ... -presidentInslee announces White House bid
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) announced in a video Friday morning he will run for president, becoming the first governor to join a crowded field vying for the Democratic nomination.
Inslee, 68, made clear his announcement video that he will put the battle against climate change at the heart of his platform like no other candidate would.
"We’re the first generation to feel the sting of climate change. And we’re the last who can do something about it. We went to the moon and created technologies that have changed the world. Our country’s next mission must be to rise up to the most urgent challenge of our time — defeating climate change," Inslee says in the video. "I'm running for president because I am the only candidate who will make defeating climate change our nation's number one priority."
Inslee has long plotted a run for president based around his record combating climate change. More than a decade ago, he co-authored a book, "Apollo's Fire," that made the case that moving to a clean energy economy would become an economic message for the Democratic Party, and his announcement video is filled with clips from his days as a member of Congress.
But Inslee has chosen a lane that virtually every Democratic primary voter cares about -- and one that comes with its own high-dollar donors. Inslee has hired several top staffers who worked for Tom Steyer, the California billionaire hedge fund manager and climate change activist who decided against running for president.
Inslee plans a press conference later Friday morning at a solar panel installation company in Seattle to discuss his bid.
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Jay Inslee Calls for the Nuclear Option to Combat Climate Change
The crisis demands an end to the filibuster in the Senate, says the Democratic presidential candidate.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democratic presidential candidate focused on climate change, argued Sunday that the Senate will have to abolish the filibuster in order to tackle the issue. “We’re not going to get anywhere as long as Mitch McConnell has the keys to the car,” he said during an interview at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.
Whereas other Democratic candidates are not running for the White House as single-issue candidates, Inslee’s campaign prioritizes the existential threat of global warming. The “first and paramount duty of the next president has to be to tackle climate change,” he said on Sunday. He warned that progress won’t be made unless the Senate removes the 60-vote threshold for passing legislation known as the filibuster, a long-standing procedural hurdle that requires 60 senators to agree to move legislation to a vote. Inslee, who noted he is the only 2020 candidate who supports ending the filibuster, called on other Democratic presidential contenders to join him.
That may be a tough sell among the other contenders, however, many of whom now serve in the Senate. The filibuster did force Democrats to weaken the Affordable Care Act before its ultimate passage in 2010, and it will likely stand in the way of other major legislation that Democrats may try to enact in the future, such as Medicare-for-All. But many Democratic senators are hesitant, because eliminating the filibuster is, of course, a double-edged sword: Whichever party is in power would more easily be able to pass laws without any say in the matter from the minority party. ...
But recent years demonstrate that the filibuster is already eroding. In 2013, when the Republican minority in the Senate was blocking confirmation of President Barack Obama’s judicial appointments, Majority Leader Harry Reid led Democrats in eliminating the filibuster for lower court nominees as well as cabinet appointees. Then, in 2017, Republicans eliminated the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees in order to confirm Justice Neil Gorsuch. The 60-vote rule, which now only applies to legislation, may well be on its way out. It’s just unclear which party will be the one to end it—and benefit first.
Inslee doubles down on climate in bid to stand out among 2020 Dems
Flanked by a sea of college students and colorful signs, 68-year-old Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) stood out from the crowd Friday at the National Youth Climate Strike in New York.
“This is a moment of great peril, but it is also a moment of great promise,” Inslee, a 2020 presidential candidate, said while speaking to students at Columbia University.
“We have a generation right here today that owns the future, is the future and, starting right here from New York and across the world, is going to save the future for this planet,” he added. ...
Inslee's stop at Columbia was part of his "Climate Mission Tour" intended to draw attention to his nascent presidential campaign, which he launched at the beginning of March.
The 2020 Democrat aims to make climate change a defining policy issue, centering his long-shot campaign around the dangers of global warming as he looks to set himself apart in a crowded Democratic primary field.
Well, based on what I know about him - which is entirely confined to what I've just read in this thread - I have to say I like the guy.
I can't get thrilled about a single-issue presidential candidate. But a vice-president focused on climate change I could definitely go for.
Or perhaps he'd like to run the EPA should a Dem win.
I can't get thrilled about a single-issue presidential candidate. But a vice-president focused on climate change I could definitely go for.
Or perhaps he'd like to run the EPA should a Dem win.
Am I being detained?
The Radical Simplicity of Jay Inslee’s 2020 Campaign
All the Democratic candidates are pledging climate change action. But Inslee’s pitch stands out.
No other Democrat running for president has a more straightforward message than Jay Inslee, the second-term governor of Washington state who has built his 2020 bid entirely around addressing climate change. “The science is clear,” he wrote in a January op-ed laying out his case before he had even jumped in the race. “We have a short period of time to act. And whether we shrink from this challenge, or rise to it, is the biggest question we face, as a nation and as a people.” He’d soon kick off his campaign with an 80-second video that uttered the words climate change or global warming a dozen times.
It’s natural, then, that Inslee’s campaign often gets boiled down to two words, climate change, but what truly distinguishes him from his Democratic rivals is a different word: priorities. “To govern is to choose,” as he likes to put it. Other White House hopefuls talk about the urgency of climate change, Inslee argues, but he’s the only one in the field who will prioritize it above all else—even health care (though he’s careful to note that global warming affects everything from public health to social justice). Given his long track record of climate advocacy and action, there’s good reason to believe that he really would deliver on his promise.
Inslee’s pragmatism doesn’t make for the most compelling stump speech, considering Democratic voters have been hearing a version of it for decades. He’s spent the first month of his campaign inside the margin of error in most polls and struggling to get noticed. But given the massive gap between what the United States is currently doing to limit the impact of global warming and what the science says it needs to be doing, Inslee’s pitch is radical in its own way. His problem is that his approach can look, well, kind of boring when compared with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal. Her wide-ranging proposal is backed by Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, and a number of other White House hopefuls, at least nominally, and has come to define how many progressives, particularly younger ones, view the issue. ...
Inslee has not yet released a detailed climate plan, but his stated goals overlap with elements of the Green New Deal and will sound familiar to anyone who’s heard a Democratic candidate talk about climate recently: He wants to transition the U.S. economy entirely to “clean energy and net-zero greenhouse gas pollution,” invest heavily in green jobs and infrastructure, end subsidies for fossil fuels, and “fight for” environmental justice and economic inclusion.
Inslee raised $2.25 million in first quarter of presidential campaign
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee raised $2.25 million for his presidential campaign in the first quarter after jumping into the race on March 1, his campaign told POLITICO.
The total comes in behind most of Inslee’s rivals in the 2020 Democratic primary. But Inslee’s campaign argued that he got into the race later than many of his competitors and has raised money at a faster clip since then.
“This first-month fundraising shows strong grassroots momentum for Gov. Inslee’s message of defeating climate change,” Inslee campaign manager Aisling Kerins said. “Jay Inslee is the only 2020 candidate who will make climate change the top priority. That clear message allowed Gov. Inslee’s upstart campaign to raise money at a faster clip than many better-known candidates. We will continue to build momentum, as voters look for a candidate who will prioritize climate change and who has the executive experience to defeat Trump and advance a progressive agenda in the White House.”
Inslee’s campaign did not release its average contribution or the number of people who have donated to the governor so far. The campaign did say 75 percent of its contributions were $25 or less and 95 percent of them were under $100. Inslee has met one of the grassroots fundraising criteria laid out by the Democratic National Committee for participation in the first round of primary debates this summer, taking in donations from at least 200 people in 20 different states.
Vox - Ezra Klein
The case for Jay Inslee
Inslee is the only candidate treating climate change the way the science says climate change should be treated.
Now that Elizabeth Warren has bounced back to third place in the Democratic primary, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is the 2020 candidate polling at the worst substance-to-popularity ratio. Inslee is at 0.6 percent in the RealClearPolitics average. In a recent New Hampshire poll, he was one of eight Democrats polling at zero.
That’s a shame. Inslee is the only candidate in the race who is treating climate change the way the science says climate change should be treated: not as one issue among many, but as the overriding emergency of our age.
As he told my colleague Dave Roberts, “I believe there is one central, defining, existential-with-a-capital-E threat to the future of the nation: climate change. It is clear that it will only be defeated if the United States shows leadership. And that will only happen if the US president makes it a clear priority — the number one, foremost, paramount goal of the next administration.”
Climate change isn’t a concern Inslee picked up just in time for the 2020 presidential race. In 2009, when he was a member of the House, he co-authored a book with energy expert Bracken Hendricks called Apollo’s Fire: Igniting America’s Clean Energy Economy, and wrote ambitious legislation trying to make his vision reality.
Inslee is a two-term governor of Washington state and the Republican attack line on him has been that the only thing he cares about is climate change. It’s the kind of insult that’s also, sort of, a compliment.
Des Moines Register
Jay Inslee makes first Iowa hire for 2020 caucus campaign
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has hired Keith Presley to lead his Iowa caucus campaign, the campaign announced Monday.
Presley, who previously served as deputy campaign manager for Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland, will be Inslee's Iowa state director. It's his first hire on the ground in Iowa.
"This new hire is a sign of the growing momentum behind Gov. Inslee’s campaign, as voters are calling for a leader who will put climate change first," Inslee's campaign manager, Aisling Kerins, said in a statement. "We’re excited to have this incredible organizer on the front line in the crucial state of Iowa."
Inslee, who announced he would run for president in March, has made climate change the defining issue of his candidacy. In April, he toured Iowa flood damage and said climate change was to blame.
A March Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll found he was the first choice of 1% of likely Democratic caucusgoers. Seventeen percent of poll respondents viewed him favorably, 8% viewed him unfavorably and 75% were unsure.
According to Inslee's communications director, Jamal Raad, the campaign surpassed 55,000 donors over the weekend. It expects to reach 65,000 soon.
Adding:Eight million jobs, $9tn in spending: Jay Inslee's radical plan to tackle climate change
The Washington governor and Democratic 2020 hopeful wants to decarbonize the economy while boosting employment
Jay Inslee, the governor of Washington state, is introducing a second portion of his climate change plan as most Democratic contenders for president have yet to officially roll out their own big-picture proposals.
Inslee’s 38-page document is focused on creating jobs. It outlines a $9tn investment over 10 years and seeks to create 8m jobs aimed at decarbonizing the economy. In an earlier plan, he vowed to make the US carbon neutral by 2045.
Inslee wants to upgrade buildings, replace water and transit infrastructure, clean up manufacturing and quintuple spending on clean energy and climate research. Many of those efforts would require congressional legislation.
The blueprint echoes progressives’ Green New Deal, but with far more details and fewer commitments to social programs.
Inslee told the Guardian: “You think of the Green New Deal as saying, ‘We should go to the moon’ – but in my plan is how to build the rocket ship. They both have their value.” He suggested other candidates might not have the “spine” to take the bold action needed.
Think Progress: Inslee drops new climate plan focused on creating 8 million jobs over 10 years
Gov. Inslee’s national climate plan calls for banning sales of new gas-powered cars by 2030
SEATTLE – Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on Friday released his presidential campaign’s ambitious blueprint for combating climate change, including a 2030 ban on the sale of new cars, light trucks and buses powered by gasoline, diesel or natural gas.
The plan relies heavily on federal regulatory action to swiftly transition the U.S. away from fossil fuels in the transportation, electricity and building sectors. It calls for a phaseout of coal-fired power plants by 2030, with zero-emission energy by 2035, and new construction standards to eliminate carbon pollution from new commercial and residential buildings.
As the 2020 election season unfolds, Democrats are eager to draw a stark contrast with the policies of President Donald Trump, who has disparaged the science behind climate change, sought to unravel Obama-era policies to reduce carbon emissions and announced his intention to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris agreement that seeks to limit the overall global temperature increase to less than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit by the century’s end.
Inslee said his plan is meant to match the scale and pace of action scientists have warned is required to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of global warming.
“It brings scientific reality because it’s based on that scientific reality that we have to build a clean-energy future to save ourselves and our kids,” Inslee said in an phone interview Thursday from California. “We are a can-do country. We need a can-do president and a can-do plan.”
Jay Inslee bolsters campaign team
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has bolstered his presidential campaign with a series of new hires experienced in the politics of climate change, which has been the animating focus of Inslee's 2020 run.
Inslee's new hires include three digital strategists: digital director Travis Mackler, deputy digital director Rainee Taylor and digital organizing director Kristin Brown. Taylor is an alum of the Climate Reality Project, while Brown previously worked at the League of Conservation Voters. Inslee also hired two strategists who had previously worked for Tom Steyer's NextGen America group: deputy political director Alex Fujinaka and deputy policy director Maggie Thomas.
Inslee has been pushing the Democratic National Committee to devote a debate to the subject of climate change, but the party committee has resisted tying particular debates to specific subjects.
Inslee's campaign also brought on press secretary Katie Rodihan, operations director Molly Keenan, trip director Chase Gallagher and scheduler Joann Grimm. Inslee's staff now numbers over two dozen, growing by more than 50 percent since the beginning of May.
"The Inslee campaign has seen a major boost of support from grassroots donors and activists over the past six weeks, ever since Gov. Inslee began rolling out his climate plans on May 3," Inslee campaign manager Aisling Kerins said in a statement. "Now we're putting down the campaign infrastructure on the ground to grow for the long haul."