The GOP is blocking the way to a cleaner, healthier, & more sustainable way of life for Black communities.
It's time to let them know: get out of the way of progress on climate change and environmental racism.
Sign the Petition
No matter how you measure it, the obstructionist behavior of the Republican party has reached new heights in preventing policy from addressing the needs of the American people.1 Presidential candidates have even suggested that racism plays an overt factor in the Republican refusal to work with President Obama’s administration.2 Nowhere is this more evident than in the wholesale opposition of the GOP to any attempt to strengthen the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).Even as climate change, pollution, and other environmental hazards continue to disproportionately impact the lives of Black people, the Republican party has stood in the way of every attempt by the Obama administration to address those issues.3 Republican members of Congress were elected to contribute to the governance of this country, not stand in the way of that process.
Republicans have done everything in their power to stand in the way of environmental policy put forth by the Obama administration. They have refused to vote on important environmental regulations, or outright opposed them. They have advised states to refuse to take part in EPA efforts to improve air quality and prevent pollution.4 The Clean Power Plan is supported by most Americans and, while not perfect or comprehensive, offers a clear step forward that benefits black communities.5 Yet Republican leadership like Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has taken steps to craft legislation that would prevent the Federal government from enforcing the very rules the Clean Power Plan would create.6 And now they are blocking nomination proceedings for the Supreme Court vacancy, in full disrespect of Congressional precedent and routine, to ensure that the government remain gridlocked until Republicans are in power.7
The Clean Power Plan and other environmental policies are more than just laws. They’re stepping stones towards better environmental outcomes for Black communities.
Republican refusal to do their jobs has crippled the process of crafting legislation that serves legitimate needs of the American people.8 Their hidden additions or addendums have caused otherwise productive laws to be vetoed.9 Yet their empty grandstanding and political opportunism only prolongs the dangers that Black communities face from environmental racism. Black children suffer disproportionately from asthma, and are seven to eight times more likely to die of asthma as white children.10 Communities of color face nearly 40% more exposure to toxic air pollution than white communities.11 Environmental racism continues to place minorities in close proximity to pollution and other environmental hazards.12 As long as GOP obstruction rules the day, the government can’t act to protect Black communities from climate change, pollution, and other environmental hazards. We can’t allow this to continue.
Until justice is real,
Brandi, Rashad, Arisha, Bernard, Evan, and the rest of the ColorOfChange team
1. "Yes, Republicans Really Are Unprecedented in Their Obstructionism" Mother Jones, 08-25-2014. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6257?t=7&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
2. "Sanders Suggests Obama's Race Is A Factor In GOP 'Obstructionism'" Talking Points Memo, 02-23-2016. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6258?t=9&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
3. "Amid record global temperatures, Senate votes to block Obama’s Clean Power Plan" The Washington Post, 11-17-2015. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/6259?t=11&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
4. "McConnell Is Now Telling States To Ignore Obama’s Carbon Emission Rules" ThinkProgress, 03-05-2015. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6260?t=13&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
5. "The House Just Voted To Kill A Plan That Most Americans Support" ThinkProgress, 12-02-2015. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6261?t=15&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
6. "What's McConnell's Next Move on the EPA's Clean Power Plan?" Roll Call, 08-03-2015.http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6262?t=17&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
7. "McConnell: Blocking Supreme Court Nomination 'About A Principle, Not A Person'" NPR, 03-16-2016. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6263?t=19&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
8. "Senate Attacks on Clean Power Plan Going Nowhere" Huffington Post, 11-17-2015. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6264?t=21&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
9. "Obama vetoes GOP push to kill climate rules" The Hill, 12-19-2015. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6265?t=23&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
10. "Clinton accurately says black children with asthma have 500% higher mortality rate" PolitiFact, 08-11-2015. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6266?t=25&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
11. "'Environmental Injustice': Minorities Face Nearly 40% More Exposure to Toxic Air Pollution" Common Dreams, 04-16-2016. http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6267?t=27&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
12. "Pollution is segregated, too" The Washington Post, 04-15-2014. https://act.colorofchange.org/go/5877?t=29&akid=5790.1942551.azvaok
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