Democrats push for a Green New Deal to combat climate change

Reps. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Rep. Alma Adams react at House Democrats news conferenceon Capitol Hill in Washington

Kaltbaum Capital Management President Gary Kaltbaum and Wall Street Journal assistant editorial page editor James Freeman discusses the recent high-tax state exodus and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (D-N.Y.) "Green New Deal".

The legislation is already backed by more than 40 House Democrats, Bloomberg reports, including House Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern.

Ocasio-Cortez said she will immediately begin to work on legislation that would "fully flesh out the projects involved in the Green New Deal".

But the freshman congresswoman from NY introduced a Green New Deal resolution on Thursday that is already emerging as a key policy test for 2020 Democratic candidates. "I do know its enthusiastic and I welcome all the enthusiasm that is out there", she told reporters during her weekly press conference.

The proposal's unveiling came after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) released a list of the eight Democrats who will serve on a select climate change committee.

"The Green New Deal is a raw deal for the American taxpayer", said Wyoming Republican John Barrasso, chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez isn't old enough to run for president.

The Green New Deal resolution unveiled Thursday would provide guidance on the drafting of legislation.

All of which is to say that Pelosi has this right: it's a nonsense fantasy, not a serious proposal. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico, Suzanne Bonamici of Oregon, Julia Brownley of California, Sean Casten of Illinois, Jared Huffman of California, Mike Levin of California, Donald McEachin of Virginia and Joe Neguse of Colorado.

The panel will be chaired by Rep. Kathy Castor of Florida, who was chosen in December.

The freshman congresswoman, along with Sen. Ed Markey of MA are introducing a joint resolution Thursday laying out the main elements of a legislative plan.

The broad outline called for meeting 100 percent of USA power demand through clean and renewable energy, as well as upgrading "all existing buildings in the United States" to achieve maximum "energy efficiency, water efficiency, safety, affordability, comfort, and durability".

It envisions a 10-year mobilization that would upgrade and expand power sources and power grids to meet 100 percent of power demand via clean energy sources, as well as overhauling transport systems to "eliminate pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector as much as is technologically feasible".

The resolution paints a grim view of present-day America, saying it is "experiencing several related crises" including declining life expectancy, economic stagnation, erosion of worker bargaining power, increasing income inequality and the exacerbation of "systemic racial, regional, social, environmental and economic injustices".

"Ocasio-Cortez's Green New Deal represents an quake in the Democratic Party and American politics where a working class Latina bartender from the Bronx is now proposing and leading the most serious solution to rewrite America's social contract and stave off climate disaster".

"This is such a watershed moment", Ocasio-Cortez said, expressing excitement about congressional efforts to tackle climate change.

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