Photo credit: Sunrise Movement outside Rep. Pelosi’s office
1000+ youth sit-in, 143 arrested demanding Dem leadership back Green New Deal.
McGovern responds: “I’m committed to the Select Committee on a Green New Deal.”
Hoyer delays: “I appreciate their passion.”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 10, 2018
Contact: Stephen O’Hanlon, Sunrise, [email protected], (610)-955–7398
As the 2018 Congressional session wraps up, youth take action at Pelosi, McGovern, Hoyer offices demanding Select Committee on a Green New Deal to be 2019 priority; McGovern and Hoyer respond.
ADDITIONAL PHOTOS AVAILABLE HERE (Hi-res photos coming soon)
Washington, D.C. — Today, over 1,000 youth with Sunrise lobbied 50 Congressional offices and sat-in at the offices of Reps. Pelosi, Hoyer, and McGovern, demanding Democrats and their leaders in the House support the Select Committee for a Green New Deal before the holiday recess. In total, 143 were arrested during the sit-ins.
A week after the 2018 midterm election, Rep.-elect Ocasio-Cortez joined a sit-in at Rep. Pelosi’s office to ask Democrats form a Select Committee for a Green New Deal. Less than a month later, over 22 Congressional Democrats have endorsed the Select Committee, dozens more have endorsed the Green New Deal, and over 140 environmental, economic, and social justice organizations have joined the call for a Green New Deal.
“The UN says we have 12 years to transform our economy and avert catastrophe,” said Varshini Prakash, Sunrise co-founder, as the sit-in began at Rep. Pelosi’s office. “Over 1,000 young people took over Capitol Hill today because we all deserve good jobs and a livable future. The Democrats need a plan to make it happen.”
The Green New Deal is a comprehensive plan to transform the U.S economy off fossil fuels in the next decade by eliminating warming emissions from all major industries and creating millions of green jobs in the process.
Democratic Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer responded to the sit-in via Twitter, saying “I’m happy to hear from them about one of the most pressing issues of our time. Speaking out is exactly what our democracy is all about, and I appreciate their passion.”
In response, Sunrise spokesperson Varshini Prakash said, “We need you to do more than listen. We need you to take the #NoFossilFuelMoney pledge and support the proposed Select Committee on a Green New Deal by the end of the year. We’re doing our job, will you do yours?” During his 20-year career in Congress, Rep. Hoyer has received over $250,000 from fossil fuel executives, lobbyists, and PACs.
Rep. Jim McGovern greeted the young protesters in-person, accepting the demands and pledging that he is committed to the Select Committee on a #GreenNewDeal. “The reason we’re talking about it is because you’re here,” he said amidst the protesters, congratulating the growing movement for putting the Green New Deal on the national agenda. Rep. McGovern later reaffirmed his commitment on Twitter.
As Congress prepares to head home at the end of this week for winter recess, Sunrise and the growing movement for a Green New Deal has kept the pressure on, demanding the Select Committee move forward so work on the Green New Deal can begin promptly in the 2019 legislative session.
“Any politician who wants to be taken seriously by our generation needs to support solutions that match the scale and urgency of the climate crisis,” said Prakash. “If the Democrats want the youth vote in 2020, they need to get to work on a Green New Deal in 2019.”