McCain and Clinton’s New Hampshire Victory Fueled by Climate Positions

Just received a fascinating press release from the Carbon Coalition via Adam Markham of Clean Air-Cool Planet:

NH Independents Reward Candidates Who Made Global Warming Solutions a Priority

Portsmouth, NH - Advocates for an aggressive federal program to tackle climate change are celebrating the results of today's New Hampshire primary. John McCain and Hillary Clinton's wins tonight were due in part to the efforts of New Hampshire's climate voters, who sent a strong message that they are seeking a leader who will deal with the crisis of climate change.

"Since last spring when citizens in 164 New Hampshire towns passed the NH Climate Change Resolution, we knew that climate change would prove to be an important issue to people as they met with, listened to and decided upon candidates for President," said Roger Stephenson, project director for the Carbon Coalition (, a non-partisan coalition of citizens, scientists, businesses, students, communities and organizations. "It should come as no surprise that the two candidates who won here listened to those 164 towns and made climate a key issue in their campaigns."

The Carbon Coalition has spent the past two years educating citizens in New Hampshire about the need for an aggressive program to tackle global warming. Coalition supporters questioned every presidential candidate about their plans to solve global warming and urged them to endorse the "Presidential Leadership Agenda" that includes making climate change a top priority of their administration and outlining a comprehensive early action program to be developed and launched within 150 days of the November election. The Carbon Coalition compiled the candidates' responses and distributed them to thousands of New Hampshire citizens.

"When the candidates started traveling to the state more than two years ago, they were hardly mentioning global warming," said Adam Markham, CEO of Clean Air-Cool Planet, the organization that launched the Carbon Coalition project. "By the end of the New Hampshire primary, climate change had become, for many of them, an essential part of their stump speeches."

All four of the leading Democratic candidates have advocated positions consistent with the Presidential Leadership Agenda, but on the Republican side only John McCain and Mike Huckabee have come out in favor a mandatory cap-and-trade system, and only McCain has made global warming a centerpiece of his campaign message.

In a poll conducted by the Mellman Group in December, 2006, 84% of NH's Independent voters said that they wanted to see action on global warming. These Independent voters flocked to candidates who made action on climate change a priority, bringing them the margin of victory.

"Senator McCain's win isn't surprising to those of us Republicans who are active on environmental issues," said Ted Leach, Carbon Coalition Co-chair, a former NH State Representative and current board member of the Albuquerque-based Republicans for Environmental Protection. "The more he talked about climate change the higher his numbers climbed. He showed that climate change isn't a Democratic or Republican issue, it is non-partisan issue and the Senator was able to attract voters concerned about a problem that most of his opponents simply ignored.

Kudos to the Carbon Coalition and, of course, McCain and Clinton.

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