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Beto O`Rourke on Environment

Democratic candidate for President; Texas Senator nominee

 


Even conservatives want to protect public lands

Q: Republicans used to be the protectors of nature?

O'ROURKE: I'm thinking about Teddy Roosevelt, one of the great Republican leaders who was so instrumental in protecting our public lands. I campaigned across Texas. Every one of the counties that I went to, we talked about climate change. I found that this is more of a popular issue across party lines than I would have imagined. This is something that can unite us. We just have to speak boldly and confidently about a progressive ag allows us to get there.

Q: What about environmental disasters?

O'ROURKE: We should help people move when they need to move, when they've repaired their homes not once, not twice but three times just in the last five years. This is an issue of environmental justice. Let's invest in the people on the front lines of climate change, to rebuild where we can and to move where we must. It's not an inexpensive proposition but what is far more expensive is to continue to pay to rebui

Source: Climate Crisis Town Hall (CNN 2019 Democratic primary) , Sep 4, 2019

Bring everyone into process with conservation easements

I've listened to the scientists and they're very clear. We don't have more than 10 years to get this right, and we won't meet that challenge with half-steps or only half the country. Those college students I met understand that wind and solar jobs are the fastest-growing jobs in the country. Those farmers in Iowa say pay me for the environmental services of planting cover crops and keeping more land in conservation easements. That's how we meet the challenge. We bring everyone into the solution.
Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit) , Jul 30, 2019

Ensure EPA's funding & independence

Q: Support cutbacks of Environmental Protection Administration?

Ted Cruz (R): No statement found, but opposed Obama EPA's Clean Power Plan & said EPA ran amok under Obama.

Beto O'Rourke (D): No. Ensure EPA's funding & independence "to exercise oversight of those harming the environment."

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Texas Senate race , Oct 9, 2018

Require labeling genetically engineered food.

O`Rourke signed Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act

Congressional Summary:

Discussion of pro/con (Huffington Post 4/25/2013):

Polls show that the overwhelming majority of Americans--over 90%--supports mandatory labeling of foods with GE ingredients. 64 other countries already require such labels. However, strong opposition from the agriculture and biotech industries has scuttled proposals for GMO (Genetically-Modified Organisms) labeling laws in the past. The most recent and high-profile of these failed attempts at a GMO labeling requirement was California's Proposition 37, which was narrowly defeated after opponents spent $50 million lobbying against it. "Unfortunately, advocates of mandatory GMO labeling are working an agenda to vilify biotechnology and scare consumers away from safe and healthful food products," a Biotechnology Industry Organization spokeswoman wrote.

Argument in opposition (Food Democracy Now 5/26/2012):

Exactly 20 years ago today, the first Bush administration declared genetically engineered foods to be "substantially equivalent" to foods that farmers had traditionally bred for thousands of years. With this single policy, the US government radically altered the food supply, introducing novel genes into our food that had never before been consumed by humans. Corporate executives at Monsanto colluded with elected officials to make sure that their new "products" were placed onto the market as quickly as possible. Two decades later, Americans are still denied the basic right to know what's in their food because of this infamous policy.

Source: S.809/HR1699 14_H1699 on Apr 24, 2013

Voted YES to require GMO labeling.

O`Rourke voted YEA DARK Act

A BILL to require the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a national disclosure standard for bioengineered foods.

Cato Institute recommendation on voting YES: President Obama quietly signed legislation requiring special labeling for commercial foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs)--plants and animals with desirable genetic traits that were directly implanted in a laboratory. Most of the foods that humans & animals have consumed for millennia have been genetically modified, by cross-fertilization. Yet the new law targets only the highly precise gene manipulations done in laboratories. Anti-GMO activists oppose the new law because it preempts more rigorous regulation. And that's exactly the goal of this bill, to the frustration of the anti-GMO crowd.

JustLabelit.org recommendation on voting NO (because not restrictive enough): Senators Roberts (R-KS) and Stabenow (D-MI) introduced a compromise bill that would create a mandatory, national labeling standard for GMO foods. This bill falls short of what consumers expect--a simple at-a-glance disclosure on the package. As written, this compromise might not even apply to ingredients derived from GMO soybeans and GMO sugar beets. We in the consumer rights community have dubbed this the "Deny Americans the Right-to-Know" Act (DARK Act). We need to continue pressing for mandatory GMO labeling on the package.

Heritage Foundation recommendation on voting NO (because too restrictive): The House should allow [states, at their choice,] to impose [a more] restrictive labeling mandate, but prohibit the state from regulating out-of-state food manufacturers engaged in interstate commerce. Instituting a new, sweeping, federal mandate that isn't based on proven science shouldn't even be an option.

Legislative outcome: Passed by the Senate on July 7th, passed by the House on July 14th; signed by the President on July 29th

Source: Supreme Court case 16-S0764 argued on Jun 23, 2016

Other candidates on Environment: Beto O`Rourke on other issues:
2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (Libertarian-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
V.C.Arvin Vohra (Libertarian-MD)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld (L-NY,R-MA)
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War/Iraq/Mideast
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External Links about Beto O`Rourke:
Wikipedia
Ballotpedia

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Dec 15, 2019