News

2018 CLIMATE VOTERS’ GUIDE

Initiative 1631

CarbonWA is in support of Initiative 1631. But, we encourage you to do your own research, as this initiative has divided some of CarbonWA’s supporters. You can read more about the initiative in a detailed analysis we produced earlier this year or on the campaign’s website.

Top Races for State House of Representatives

The candidates highlighted below are smart climate champions, but they also represent the most competitive races where the chamber’s ability to move climate legislation hangs in the balance. Some great legislative leaders, like Joe Fitzgibbon, are safe bets to win re-election so we didn’t highlight them up front as top races. Our full endorsements list (bottom) includes all of our House endorsements.

42nd LD – Sharon Shewmake: We’ve already told you about Sharon. She’s a longtime CarbonWA supporter, an environmental economist, a mom, a professor, an activist, a carbon pricing supporter – it doesn’t get any better than this! She’s running neck and neck for state house in the 42nd LD against Vincent Buys, who is a vocal opponent of climate action, is embroiled in a Cambodia scandal, and wh” You can support Sharon here. GO SHARON!

 44th LD Jared Mead: In last legislative session’s heated carbon pricing debate, Jared was in the thick of it as an aide to Senator Guy Palumbo. Jared’s a millennial who is savvy and committed on climate issues. He got more votes in the primary than the incumbent, Republican Mark Harmsworth, who hasn’t been a climate leader. Jared’s the dad to that small orange dog too. GO JARED GO! Support Jared here. 

35th LD – David Daggett: David is a PhD engineer who helped out with the March for Science. He supports climate action but understands the needs of his rural district. He told us, “Putting a price on CO2 pollution will encourage its reduction and will also create new business opportunities. His opponent, Drew MacEwan, took a trip to Demark to learn about clean energy but used that to conclude we don’t need a price on carbon. David is running competitively in this lean-Republican district. Help David win here!

47th LD – Debra Entenman: Debra Entenman is a solid pick. She’s smart and knows her district after a long stint as Congressman Adam Smith’s aide. She believes we need to take action, stating unequivocally “I believe climate change is real, caused by the use of fossil fuels, and can be slowed or reversed by legislative policies.” This statement alone puts her head and shoulders above her opponent. This one’ll be a nail-biter. Support Debra here.

Top Races for State Senate

Here are some of the races that will determine whether climate action is within reach and whether the chamber can move climate legislation forward. As with the House, we didn’t highlight some of the easy choices. These races will be key to electing a climate majority to the Senate.

47th LD – Joe Fain: Senator Fain has been one of the most consistent Republican voices on climate change. When discussing his approach with us, he said “Combating climate change requires sober thinking and reasoned action based on the best available science.” Specifically, Joe endorsed I-732 and has since sponsored a bill that would require utilities to factor the cost of carbon emissions into their long-term plans. Our take is that Joe Fain’s presence is going to be essential to bipartisan action on climate change. Help us RETURN JOE FAIN to Olympia by volunteering or donating here!

Update (9/28): We are concerned about the sexual misconduct allegations against Sen. Fain made on Sept. 27 and are monitoring the situation with regard to our endorsement.

30th LD – Mark Miloscia: Mark Miloscia has been another important Republican voice on climate change. He’s been very engaged in finding bipartisan, smart, accountable carbon reduction policies. If we had more leaders like Mark, Washington would’ve solved this challenge by now. Mark supported I-732, has been engaged on carbon pricing, and has supported net-metering. We especially appreciate Mark’s focus on good government and accountability. Mark summarizes his approach in saying, “Only by working together, in a spirit of compromise, quality, and accountability, will we develop a carbon reduction plan that truly works.” Climate voters will make a good choice if they return Mark to the Senate – help him win here!

In the 30th, democratic challenger Claire Wilson is also a reasonable choice. We also endorsed Claire because even though she has less direct experience on climate than Mark, she’s made addressing climate change a priority. Claire said in her questionnaire, “I will advance environmental bills to reduce our state’s emissions, support clean industries, and mitigate the damage caused by effects of climate change we are already seeing — like wildfires and decreased air quality throughout the state.” You can support Claire here. 

26th LD Emily Randall: This race presents one of the top prospects to expand the climate majority in the Senate. Emily is running in one of the most competitive districts to replace retiring Senator Jan Angel. Angel was not engaged on climate issues, and we aren’t confident that Emily’s opponent Marty McClendon would be either. Emily had this to say: “We need to address our greenhouse gas and carbon emissions — keeping our air and water clean for our salmon and orcas, our children and our grandchildren.” You can support Emily here.

The Rest of Our House & Senate Endorsements

 

Race

Name

CarbonWA’s Take

1st Rep

Shelley Kloba

Rep. Kloba has been a reliable environmental vote. On climate, she says, “I support common-sense approaches to reducing our fossil fuels.” Vote Kloba!

4th Rep

Mary May

If she wins, May promises to “sponsor and support legislation aimed at incentivizing clean and renewable energy production.”

7th Rep

Michael Bell

Bell told us, “Climate change cannot be denied…We have the technology to accomplish this and stimulate the economy at the same time. Why would anyone oppose these actions?” We couldn’t agree more – vote Bell!

9th Rep

Matt Sutherland

Matt sold us on his race in this video of a debate where he calls out the incumbent Joe Schmick for his anti-science climate denial. On climate, Matt says, “We have an opportunity and an obligation to the future.” Matt also served in the military and studied clean energy at WSU.

25th Rep

Jaime Smith

Smith says about climate change, “waiting is not an option when our children’s lives are on the line.” Vote Smith.

26th Rep

Joy Stanford

Stanford says “I believe Washington should be at the forefront of the clean energy economy.” She support public-private partnerships, and wants to focus on job creation and reducing traffic.

27th Rep

Laurie Jinkins (Pos 1)

Jake Fey (Pos 2)

Incumbents Fey and Jinkins have been reliable climate advocates and voters in the 27th should send them back to Olympia.

32nd Sen

Jesse Salomon & Maralyn Chase

Incumbent Chase backed I-732 and has been an independent voice within her party for climate action. Salomon is challenging her as a fellow Democrat, with solid experience in local government and with climate change as a priority. Voters looking for daylight between Chase and Salomon might find ST3 (Chase is skeptical of ST3’s bang for the buck) and density defining issues.

34th Rep

Joe Fitzgibbon

Joe Fitzgibbon has been the strongest representative on climate issues in Olympia. He’s provided leadership on carbon pricing and low carbon fuels. If we could clone him (will someone work on that?) and send 10 more Joe Fitzgibbon’s to Olympia, we would.  

34th Sen

Joe Nguyen

Joe Nguyen is a good choice here. His summed his stance in saying, “I am proud to support a carbon tax in Washington State and to ensuring that implementation of policies are done in an equitable manner.”

35th Rep

James Thomas

Thomas put together a competitive primary in this lean-red district. He’s an economic planner who would be an upgrade on climate issues from the current incumbent, Griffey.

39th Rep

Ivan Lewis

Lewis supports carbon pricing and says, “we are faced with a moral crisis” when it comes to climate change.

44th Sen

Steve Hobbs

Steve Hobbs isn’t afraid to buck his party, and we value his independent streak. At times he’s frustrated us, like when he withheld a committee vote for carbon tax legislation, but he is the stronger choice for the 44th. Hobbs pledges in his questionnaire “to advocate for a sustainable transportation infrastructure including investments in multi-modal and commute-trip reduction programs.

45th Sen

Manka Dhingra

Senator Dhingra deserves a full term after winning a narrow special election last year. She co-sponsored carbon tax legislation in her first year and is a strong transit supporter.

48th Sen

Patty Kuderer

Challenger Rodney Tom might be someone who could bridge partisan divides on climate, but he has so far failed to speak up about the issue. Kuderer, on the other hand, co-sponsored carbon tax legislation last session. Kuderer has our support.

48th Rep

Amy Walen

Walen has a wealth of experience in Kirkland city government (including helping pass a plastic bag ban), and has concrete ideas to advance climate action. Go Amy!

A few final thoughts to leave you with: We didn’t endorse in every single legislative race. In some cases, this is because we thought both the incumbent and the challenger were middling on climate issues, so there wasn’t a distinction to draw. In other cases, it was because a potentially good candidate didn’t complete the questionnaire (a requirement) or engage with our process. That’s fine, because its a lot of work for candidates to get all the questionnaires done, but it explains some of our curious omissions like Reuven Carlyle and Gerry Pollett. Other climate leaders aren’t up for re-election. Our endorsement list also tilts to the Democratic side mostly due to participation rates among the candidates. A number of Republicans who have engaged with us on climate issues, like JT Wilcox, just chose not to pursue our endorsement. We are still excited to work with them next year. We also received some interesting questionnaires from candidates in both parties, like Republican Chris Gildon in the 25th, that weren’t sufficient for an endorsement but who we want to work with and who just might earn our endorsement in the next round.
We make mistakes, so if you think we whiffed on one of these, please write us and make your case, and we might just publish your critique in the next newsletter!