Van Jones and GFA National Director Michelle Romero Break Down Ocasio-Cortez's Green New Deal

Right-wing media outlets seem to be waging a coordinated campaign to portray US Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as a dimwit radical. Their efforts will backfire. She is in fact championing the smartest, most practical idea in US politics to address two urgent problems: climate change and poverty.

Ocasio-Cortez, along with a growing number of Democratic colleagues, is asking Rep. Nancy Pelosi to create a select committee on a "Green New Deal" -- comprehensive legislation for a mass mobilization of people and resources toward solutions to the climate crisis. If Pelosi agrees, the congressional committee could develop a plan to improve the economy and the environment within a year.
In 2007, Pelosi established a select committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming; it played a role in the creation of the 2007 energy bill, a 2009 stimulus package that included funds for energy efficiency and other environmental provisions, and the 2009 Waxman-Markey bill, which would have established emissions caps and implemented a system for trading emissions allowances, was passed by the House but never acted upon by the Senate. A select committee on a Green New Deal could allow congressional Democrats to pick up where they left off after Republicans disbanded the former committee in 2011 when they took control of the House.
Creating a committee now would be a huge step forward. A big driver of Ocasio-Cortez's proposal is curbing climate change. A landmark climate report released last month showed the world has less than 12 years to cut carbon emissions in half to avoid catastrophic consequences -- a fact that the Trump administration is teaming up with Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Russia to try to bury at the COP24 summit in Poland.
Inspired by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's legendary public programs and projects in the 1930s intended to lift America out of the Great Depression, a Green New Deal could reduce climate pollution while uplifting struggling families.

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