- As Trump Slashes Climate Protections, Ellison, Jealous, Van Jones, & House of Cards Creator Call on Cuomo to Lead

For Immediate Release: March 29, 2017

As Trump Slashes Climate Protections, Ellison, Jealous, Van Jones, & House of Cards Creator Call on Cuomo to Lead

Dozens of national leaders urge Gov to include bold climate action in NYS budget

Albany – As progressive leaders from across the country, we recognize the urgent threat posed by the Trump administration’s cynical denial of climate science… The country is looking to New York to take on President Trump’s destructively anti-science agenda by leading on climate action, creating good jobs, and investing in environmental justice communities.”

Dozens of the nation’s most respected progressive leaders – including Congressman Keith Ellison, Senator Jeff Merkley, author Naomi Klein, former NAACP President Ben Jealous, CNN commentator Van Jones, former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich, and Karenna Gore – wrote to Governor Andrew Cuomo to step up New York’s climate leadership as the Trump Administration continues its assault on federal climate and clean air protections. The letter called on the Governor to incorporate the Climate and Community Protection Act, the nation’s strongest climate action, environmental justice, and green jobs legislation, into the SFY2017-18 Budget.  

The letter comes as Trump announced the dismantling of the life-saving Clean Power Plan, and undermining of the historic Paris Climate Agreement. The administration has already begun the roll back of vehicle emission standards, while the Republican-controlled Congress has advanced “Smoggy Skies” legislation that would cut down the Clean Air Act.

In recent weeks, Governor Cuomo has stoked speculation that he is considering launching a 2020 presidential campaign. With experts looking to states like New York and California to forge a path forward on climate in the Trump era, the Governor’s actions on climate are likely to attract more attention from across the country. 

The letter reads, in part, “President Trump will take us backward; we call on you to set an example for the nation and world by championing environmental and health protections in the 2017 budget. We look forward to working with you to make New York State the true climate leader this country urgently needs.”

Signatories include:

Angela Adrar, Executive Director, Climate Justice Alliance
Page Atcheson, Executive Director, Our Climate
Lydia Avila, Executive Director, Power Shift Network
Aaron Bartley, Executive Director, PUSH Buffalo
Eddie Bautista, Executive Director, NYC Environmental Justice Alliance
Michael Brune, Executive Director, Sierra Club
Dan Cantor, National Director, Working Families Party
Jon Cavanagh, Director, Institute for Policy Studies
Blythe Danner, Actress
Congressman Keith Ellison
Jodie Evans, Co-Founder, CodePink
Laura Flanders, Executive Producer, Laura Flanders Show
Josh Fox, Director, Gasland
Anna Galland, Executive Director, MoveOn.org
Jihan Gearon, Executive Director, Black Mesa Water Coalition
Lois Gibbs, Founder, Center for Health, Environment & Justice
George Goehl, Co-Executive Director, People's Action
Karenna Gore, Director, Center for Earth Ethics at Union Theological Seminary
LeeAnn Hall, Co-Executive Director, People's Action
Larry Hanley, President, Amalgamated Transit Union
Tara Houska, National Campaign Director, Honor the Earth
Ben Jealous, former President and CEO, NAACP
Brad Johnson, Executive Director, Climate Hawks Vote
Van Jones, Founder & President, The Dream Corps
Naomi Klein, Author, "This Changes Everything"
Winona LaDuke, Executive Director, Honor the Earth
Dr. Gabriela D. Lemus, President, Progressive Congress Action Fund
Annie Leonard, Executive Director, Greenpeace
Heather McGhee, President, Demos
Bill McKibben, Co-Founder, 350.org
Sen. Jeff Merkley, U.S. Senator, Oregon
Ai-Jen Poo, Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance
Robert Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor
Rashad Robinson, Executive Director, Color of Change
Cameron Russell, Model, Writer, Activist
Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Columbia University
Karen Scharff, Executive Director, Citizen Action of New York
Sarah Shanley Hope, Executive Director, Solutions Project
Peggy Shepard, Executive Director, WE ACT for Environmental Justice
Yifat Susskind, Executive Director, MADRE
Vien Truong, Executive Director, Green For All
Lisa Tyson, Executive Director, Long Island Progressive Coalition
Javier Valdes, Co-Executive Director, Make the Road New York
Katrina vanden Heuvel, Editor and Publisher, The Nation
Beau Willimon, Creator, House of Cards
Billy Wimsatt, Director, VOTE MOB
Elizabeth Yeampierre, Executive Director, UPROSE