To the surprise of absolutely no one following climate change politics, Republicans are voting against their districts' health and safety. A new report from House Energy and Commerce Democrats reveals a climate disconnect. The report finds that Republican members representing the districts most affected by record high temperatures cast anti-climate votes 96% of the time in the 112th Congress. No similar "climate disconnect" was found in the voting records of House Democrats; Democratic members representing districts most affected by high temperatures voted 86% of the time to uphold the Administration’s authority to address climate change or to act to address climate change.
The greatest number of record-setting daily high temperatures in 2012 were experienced in ten Congressional districts all represented by Republicans: Nebraska 3rd, represented by Adrian Smith; South Dakota At Large, represented by Kristi Noem; Wyoming At Large, represented by Cynthia Lummis; Kansas 1st, represented by Tim Huelskamp; Missouri 6th, represented by Sam Graves; Iowa 4th, represented by Steve King; Colorado 3rd, represented by Scott Tipton; Texas 13th, represented by Mac Thornberry; Texas 19th, represented by Randy Neugebarger; and Arkansas 1st, represented by Rick Crawford. 97% of their votes on climate were opposed to action and in favor of frying their districts.
For comparison's sake, the ten Democratic-represented congressional districts with the highest number of record temperatures were Iowa’s 1st and 2d, Minnesota’s 7th, New Mexico’s 3d, Wisconsin’s 3d, Minnesota’s 1st, West Virginia’s 3d, Maine’s 2d, Mississippi’s 2d, and Colorado’s 2d. Democratic members representing the districts with the most record high temperatures voted 79% of the time to uphold Administration authority to address climate change or to otherwise act to address climate change. Only two of the Democratic members representing these districts – Reps. Collin Peterson (MN-7) and Nick Rahall (WV-3) – voted for the anti-climate position more than half the time.
If the Republicans truly cared about the people of their districts, they would connect the dots between their actions and the health and safety of the people they represent. They don't. They're too beholden to the fossil fuel industry and too disconnected from the people they nominally represent. It's time to vote them out of office. Climate Hawks Vote, a new project with the slogan: "Climate matters. We vote," aims to do just that.