Climate advocacy group plans to spend $80 million on ads to help Biden | ET REALITY


Climate Power, a liberal advocacy group, plans to spend $80 million on advertising to improve President Biden’s standing on environmental issues and inform voters about the impact of legislation he signed last year.

Polls show that few voters are aware of the president’s record on climate issues, and there is widespread dissatisfaction with his handling of the issue, a dynamic that reflects voters’ discontent with his handling of the economy and other concerns.

This new effort also adds to the constellation of outside groups working to solve one of the Democratic Party’s most vexing problems: how to make a president seen by his own party as too old to seek reelection and popular enough to win a probable revenge. with former President Donald J. Trump.

Climate Power’s solution is to feed voters a steady stream of television and digital advertising that highlights Biden’s legislative achievements to protect the environment and contrasts them with Trump, who has mocked climate science, rolled back regulations aimed at reduce emissions and has promised to be a booster of the oil, gas and coal industries.

“There are a lot of people who just don’t know anything. There is also a segment of people who want me to do more. There is also a fringe that thinks it has gone too far,” said Lori Lodes, executive director of Climate Power, in an interview last week. “We need to make sure that Biden’s coalition, the people who put him in office in 2020, see that he has delivered on his promises. And he he he has.”

As with much of Biden’s agenda, his climate policies tend to do well on their own, but do worse when partnered with the president. A Washington Post poll from July found that 70 percent of Americans, including 51 percent of Republicans, would like the next president to be someone who favors government action to address climate change. AND Climate Power’s own research showed that 67 percent of voters believe that climate is a “table issue.”

However, even though Democratic majorities in Congress last year passed, and Biden signed, the Inflation Reduction Act – legislation that invests $370 billion in spending and tax credits on forms of zero-energy energy. emissions to fight climate change) there is little evidence that he has reaped the political benefits of voters who share his climate goals.

Last month, Associated Press and the NORC Center for Public Affairs Research at the University of Chicago found that Biden’s approval on handling climate change was 42 percent, similar to his overall approval rating of 40 percent, and better than the 33 percent who approved of his handling of the economy.

That poll found that Biden’s climate approval ratings had fallen from 52 percent in September 2021, before she signed her landmark climate legislation, and from 49 percent in September 2022, weeks after she signed it.

The 30-second ads Climate Power has run this year, which were paid for with help from Future Forward, the independent spending organization blessed by the Biden campaign, have focused on the efforts to reduce home energy costs and Create jobs in factories that manufacture renewable energy products. The ads tout gains “thanks to Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act.”

The expected $80 million will come from so-called dark money, whose donors are not required to be disclosed under federal law, Lodes said. A super PAC affiliated with Climate Power, which can also accept unlimited contributions but must report its donors to the Federal Election Commission, is expected to advertise on Biden’s behalf next year.

The Climate Power campaign also has praise from Biden’s top advisers in the White House.

“President Biden has delivered on the most ambitious agenda to fight climate change, including enacting the largest climate investment ever,” said Jen O’Malley Dillon, White House deputy chief of staff. “Climate Power is a critical partner in continuing to demonstrate to the American people that the president is building a clean energy economy that benefits all Americans.”

Part of the challenge of selling Biden’s progress on climate is that young voters, who polls show care the most about the issue, tend to be the most skeptical about his record on the issue. There has been significant anger over Biden’s approval of Willow, an $8 billion oil drilling project on pristine federal lands in Alaska, and a pipeline that would transport natural gas from West Virginia to Virginia that has been opposed by environmentalists.

Lodes dismissed the left’s anger over Biden’s climate record and said Climate Power would seek to attract a broader group of critical voters to its 2024 coalition.

“There are the activists and then there are the voters,” he said. “Climate activists are going to push and push. And you know what? The Biden campaign and the Biden administration need to be pressured to do more and go further. But at the end of the day, the reality is that he has done more than any other president in American history on climate.”

Lisa Friedman and Ruth Igielnik contributed with reports.

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