Seven members score perfect 100% marks in this year’s rankings
For Immediate Release:
Wednesday, March 2, 2022
Lee Francis | Deputy Director
Virginia League of Conservation Voters
(804) 225-1902 | firstname.lastname@example.org
RICHMOND – Today, the Virginia League of Conservation Voters released the Virginia Congressional delegation’s scores from the League of Conservation Voters’ 2021 National Environmental Scorecard. The Scorecard is the primary yardstick for evaluating the environmental records of members of Congress since 1970 and is available for download here, in Spanish here, and online in both languages at scorecard.lcv.org.
2021 was an unprecedented year. We endured heightened federal attacks on the foundation of our democracy all while we continue to face the staggering costs of climate change, the losses from an ongoing global pandemic, and reckoning with systemic racism. The 2021 National Environmental Scorecard had a historically high percentage of votes related to justice and democracy in both chambers, reflecting these intersecting challenges. Those critical democracy-related votes combined with the record number of diverse Biden nominees resulted in a record number of scored votes in the Senate.
“Virginians across the Commonwealth should be proud of the important work our Congressional delegation is doing in Washington to protect our environment and preserve our democracy,” said Michael Town, Executive Director of Virginia LCV. “In a year unlike any other, Virginia’s delegation stepped up to address the climate crisis, maintain the integrity of our elections and the democratic process, and put our nation back on track when it comes to environmental protection. It’s now time to get the job done by passing the Build Back Better Agenda along with the strong voting rights protections we deserve.”
The full delegation’s scores for 2021 are:
U.S. House of Representatives
Pro-environment and pro-democracy leaders across both chambers and the White House undid much of the damage from the Trump administration and made progress in key areas. While the Build Back Better Act and vital democracy reforms passed the House, they remain stalled in the Senate by unanimous Republican opposition.
In the past 50 years, LCV has never felt it necessary to score the basic votes that uphold our country’s peaceful transfer of power and electoral outcomes. This year was different. With the unprecedented Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection and so many attacks by Republican members of Congress on the fundamental tenets of our country’s governance, LCV scored these votes, in both chambers.
“While 2021 was an incredibly difficult year for our democracy and our climate, it was a sea change from the Trump presidency,” said LCV Senior Director of Government Affairs Matthew Davis. “Our pro-environment, pro-democracy trifecta made strides toward an equitable clean energy future in 2021. That’s why we are so proud of Virginia’s delegation who fought for the bold steps we know we need to tackle the interwoven climate and racial justice crises. We see the last year as the foundation for accomplishing the transformational change we need in 2022. The Biden-Harris administration took bold steps towards tackling the interwoven climate and racial justice crises, the House passed the Build Back Better Act and democracy reforms, and now it’s up to the Senate to pass the transformational investments needed to combat the climate crisis and protect our democracy.”
The 2021 Scorecard includes 22 House votes, half of which were justice and democracy-related votes such as the vitally important voting rights bills. The 34 Senate votes include six justice and democracy votes. This reflects the need to safeguard the fundamentals of our governance from numerous federal judiciary and state and local policy attacks on our democracy and voting rights, which primarily target people of color.
LCV has published a National Environmental Scorecard every Congress since 1970. The Scorecard represents the consensus of experts from more than 20 respected environmental and conservation organizations who selected the key votes on which members of Congress should be scored. LCV scores votes on the most important issues of the year, including energy, climate change, environmental justice, public health, public lands and wildlife conservation, democracy, and spending for environmental programs. The votes included in the Scorecard presented members of Congress with a real choice and help distinguish which legislators are working for environmental protection. More information on individual votes and the Scorecard archive can be found at scorecard.lcv.org.
The Virginia League of Conservation Voters serves as the political voice of the state’s conservation community, working to make sure Virginia’s elected officials recognize that our natural heritage is an environmental and economic treasure for all. Virginia LCV works with conservation leaders across Virginia and strives for a conservation majority in state government. We secure good public policies on the state level and hold public officials accountable for their positions on environmental issues. For more information, visit www.valcv.org.