Alan Minsky, PDA Executive Director – 818-749-9497 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Russell Greene, PDA Senior Strategic Advisor – 310-722-6108 / email@example.com
With the World on Fire, Why Is the Democratic Party Refusing to Hold a Climate Debate?
August 24, 2019 (Washington, DC) – Today Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) announced the presidential campaigns of philanthropist Tom Steyer, U.S. Representative Tulsi Gabbard and activist, author and non- denominational faith leader Marianne Williamson have joined an open letter to Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chair Tom Perez demanding a DNC-sponsored climate debate. The announcement comes as DNC members vote at their Summer Meeting in San Francisco on whether to sponsor a climate debate.
“We are grateful to presidential candidates Tom Steyer, Tulsi Gabbard and Marianne Williamson for signing on to the Open Letter insisting that Chairman Perez sanction a DNC-sponsored climate debate,” said Alan Minsky, PDA’s Executive Director. “The Democratic Party needs to show it is ready to respond to the existential climate threat by delivering the American people a televised climate debate.”
“The climate town halls that have been scheduled as substitutes are not enough – their format does not allow for the vigorous debate necessary to tackle the climate crisis, nor an audience big enough to hear the critical call to act,” said Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer. “I stand with the signers of the open letter to demand that the DNC host an official presidential climate debate.”
“How are Democrats going to mobilize America ‘on a scale not seen since World War II’ to combat the ‘global climate emergency,’ as the Democratic Party Platform asserts, if they won’t even hold a climate emergency debate?” asked Tom Weis, Climate Advisor to PDA. “The world is on fire and Democrats need to sound the alarm.”
“The threats of climate change and of nuclear war loom large – both caused by a failure of leadership by self-serving, powerful politicians and corporate interests that have traded the long-term survival of our species for their own short- term gain,” said Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard. “If we do not rise to the challenges presented, engage our imagination, face up courageously to the problems, and exercise clear and immediate leadership to navigate towards a solution, our children and our children’s children will hold us accountable.”
“The climate crisis is a reminder of humanity’s pathological irreverence toward the earth, a self-destructive dysfunction from which we will heal or possibly not even survive as a species,” said Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson. “This is more than a climate crisis; it is a survival crisis, and it should be seen as such. Our ability to take in the horror of what is happening, and to summon the courage to do something about it, will determine the most critical choice in humanity’s history: whether to continue the journey of our evolution or rather through our own selfishness and greed elect to end it.”
“The Democratic party has failed to courageously lead on climate change,” said Russell Greene, Senior Strategic Advisor to PDA. “It has not been honest with the American people as to how grave a threat we face as a nation, as individuals, families and communities. It’s as if when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor we chose not to discuss it. Everything is at risk. Hold the debate!”
DNC members will call for a floor vote on a resolution to have a climate debate at the DNC meeting in San Francisco this morning. PDA calls on all DNC members to support Resolution 5 in today’s floor vote.