I want to be perfectly clear: I believe in science.
The impact of unchecked fossil fuels on our planet and our health has not been in dispute for decades. Period. Clean air and clean water are not controversial. They are essential to our health, our prosperity, and our quality of life. We should be encouraging investment in renewable energy and conservation as ways to create new jobs and make ourselves energy independent.
Having said that, I fully appreciate and understand the impact that regulations to protect the environment have had on many people. I am a legacy of the coal mining industry. My own grandfather spent his career in the Docena, Alabama coal mines. I have enormous sympathy with the families in our state that have seen their incomes decline or their jobs vanish as coal prices have dropped. Rather than promise that miners can return for generations to dangerous, scarcely regulated jobs -- I think America must step-up to secure a safety net of healthcare and job retraining for these families and 21st century education for their children. The possibilities in the minds of these children is the future of our state.
The United States must remain in the Paris Accords
President Trump has moved us ever-further from the international community by withdrawing from the Paris Accords. I know that we can provide economic prosperity to our citizens AND be a beacon of democracy and human rights for the world. Mr. Trump rejected both.
America is great when it understands the responsibilities that come with being the leader of the free world. This seems lost on many in Washington right now as many of the President's nationalist advisors seem determined to wrap us in our own cocoon.