As Rep. Jeffries makes bids for House Minority Leader, New York activists point to his weak climate record and ties to the fossil fuel industry

For immediate publication

Today, climate activists held a press conference at the Brooklyn office of Congressman Hakeem Jeffries to condemn his weak climate record and ties to the fossil fuel industry, urging him to take a stand against Senator Manchin’s Dirty Pipeline Deal. As of 2022, two of Jeffries’ top ten donors were private equity firms with interests in fossil fuels. Jeffries’ campaign accepted $80,550 from Apollo Global Management and Blackstone Group this year, while he continued to refuse to take on the No Fossil Fuel Money pledge signed by 59 members of Congress.

Since taking office in 2013, Rep. Jeffries has failed to take bold steps to end America’s reliance on the fossil fuels fueling the crisis, from banning fracking nationwide to halting new infrastructure. of fossil fuels, ban fossil fuel exports, and cut taxpayer subsidies to the fossil fuel industry. More recently, he was one of only two New York City Democrats in the House that did not publicly oppose Senator Manchin’s “Dirty Pipeline Deal”.

The press conference came days after Jeffries announced his candidacy for House Minority Leader, a position he is expected to assume later this month. Speakers called on Jeffries to provide bold climate leadership from day one as House Minority Leader. Activists from 350 Brooklyn, Climate Families NYC, Food & Water Watch, Indivisible Brooklyn, New York Communities for Change, and Sunrise Movement NYC demanded that Jeffries oppose any revamped version of Sen. Joe Manchin’s “Dirty Pipeline Deal” that speeds up the Mountain pipeline Valley and other fossil fuel infrastructure, while weakening fundamental environmental laws, and urged him to fight the House Republican majority, which is dominated by climate deniers and fossil fuel extremists.

Food & Water Watch New York Organizer Santosh Nandabalan said:

“Reps. Jeffries’ ability to lead Democrats in the House is called into question by his virtual silence on perhaps the greatest threat facing humanity: the climate crisis. While New Yorkers fought one after the other against gas plants and the ruptured pipelines that threaten our health and climate, Rep. Jeffries has not used his considerable influence in Washington to advance the cause.As House Minority Leader or as a representative from Brooklyn, our demands are the same: Rep. Jeffries You must stand up to your corporate fossil fuel donors and advocate for bold legislation to end our addiction to fossil fuels.”

“Rep. Jeffries has long championed corporate interests over the planet and the workers in his district hurt by the climate crisis,” he said. Sonia Medrano, member of New York Communities for Change and constituent of Jeffries. “As House Minority Leader, Representative Jeffries must reverse his weak climate record and reject any revamped version of Senator Manchin’s ‘Dirty Deal’ that may be in the works.”

“Democrats exceeded their midterm expectations because of climate-conscious young and millennial voters in a large majority. But politicians like Jeffries still ignore the climate at best and do what the fossil fuel industry asks at worst,” he said. Liat Olenick with Indivisible Nation Brooklyn and Climate Families NYC. “The party and Hakeem Jeffries must choose: youth or fossil fuels. And the choice is clear.

“The climate crisis is rapidly accelerating, even as Congressman Jeffries remains silent,” he said. Sara Gronim of the local grassroots group 350Brooklyn. “Right now, Senator Joe Manchin is trying to add language to the National Defense Authorization Act that would allow fossil fuel companies to traverse interstate pipelines for environmental and local concerns. Right now the United States is exporting more liquefied natural gas than any other country on the planet. That methane gas is 85 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Where is Congressman Jeffries? Leadership means responsibility. We need him to take responsibility for real climate action.”

Recorded live stream available on Food & Water Watch – New York Facebook page

Contact: Phoebe Galt, [email protected]

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