RICHMOND – The Virginia League of Conservation Voters today unveiled scores for Virginia’s congressional delegation released this morning as part of the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) 2016 National Environmental Scorecard.
The 2016 Scorecard scores votes cast during the second session of the 114th Congress. It includes 17 votes in the Senate and 38 House votes, setting a new record for the most votes scored in the House and reflecting that, under Speaker Paul Ryan, the U.S. House remains the most anti-environmental in history. Nationally, the average House Republican score for 2016 was 5 percent, while the average House Democrat score was 94 percent.
In Virginia, three House members and both U.S. Senators earned a score of 80 percent or greater on the 2016 Scorecard, while the remainder of the congressional delegation earned an abysmal score of 5 percent or less. The average U.S. House score in 2016 for Virginia was 28 percent and the average U.S. Senate score was 94 percent.
The Scorecard is available in both English and Spanish at scorecard.lcv.org.
“Virginia’s congressional delegation, as a whole, can and must do better. The partisan rift on environmental issues is unacceptable when protecting clean air and water is so important to the daily quality of life and public health of all Virginians – regardless of where they fall on the political spectrum,” said Virginia LCV’s Executive Director Michael Town. “We encourage our champions to continue to stand up for the environment and urge those who missed the mark to start doing the right thing – Virginia voters are watching.”
“2016 saw a relentless assault on both bedrock environmental protections and recent progress even as we experienced the hottest year on record – for the third year in a row – and world leaders came together on Earth Day to sign the historic climate agreement reached in Paris,” said LCV President Gene Karpinski. “Fortunately, President Obama and our allies in Congress beat back the vast majority of these attacks and stood up for the health of our families, communities of color on the frontlines of climate change, and the international consensus to take action on climate.”
Virginia Congressional Delegation Scores
U.S. House of Representatives
The number of environmental champions in Congress continues to grow, and they are becoming more vocal and effective than ever before. Our environmental allies stood up for clean air and water, public lands, climate science, wildlife, and more. They fought for the health of our families and voted against the interests of Big Polluters, and with President Obama, were able to fight off the seemingly endless parade of attacks on environmental protections in Congress.
The 2016 Scorecard is being released at a time when attacks on the environment are already coming fast and furious from polluter allies in both the Trump administration and Congress. While the attacks contained in the 2016 Scorecard were largely prevented from becoming law thanks to opposition in the Senate and the President’s veto pen, those attacks serve as a preview of what’s at stake now that polluters have an ally in the White House who can be expected to sign these anti-environmental pieces of legislation should they reach his desk.
Indeed, both houses of Congress have already passed a resolution eliminating the Stream Protection Rule using the radical Congressional Review Act (CRA) legislative tool, and the House has passed a similar measure voiding the Bureau of Land Management’s Methane and Waste Reduction Rule—both of which are the subject of votes in the 2016 Scorecard.
For over 40 years, the National Environmental Scorecard issued by LCV has been the nationally accepted yardstick used to rate members of Congress on environmental, public health, and energy issues. For more information, visit http://scorecard.lcv.org.