Being wealthy means that you have the power to influence at the very highest level and billionaire Tom Steyer has announced he intends to do just that and to push the promotion of the green agenda during the next presidential campaign in 2016.
According to a report by Reuters Tom Steyer has said that he plans to use his wealth to try to bring climate change into the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, vowing to target Republican hopefuls who deny the connection between burning fossil fuels and rising global temperatures.
A new campaign has been launched by the NextGen Climate political action committee, run by Tom Steyer and is working to call out Republican candidates for taking money from the billionaire Koch brothers with the next target on the radar expected to be Senator Rand Paul.
Reuter notes that Steyer’s PAC found limited success turning climate change into a wedge issue in the 2014 midterm elections, despite spending over $70 million on candidates backing strong climate change policies. The results of the efforts led to only three of seven candidates backed by NextGen winning their races which may not be a total success but has shown that it is possible to create great influence and to push forward the green agenda in politics.
The plan this time from Tom Steyer is to target the Koch brothers directly and to show the links between them and their campaign spending and politicians who deny the science underpinning the rise in global temperatures.
A memo from NextGen said: “The Koch brothers have emerged as a serious liability for politicians … making their political influence a critical wedge issue that moves the dial with swing voters and enrages the young voters needed by the GOP to take back the White House.”
NextGen are hoping not to repeat the mistakes they may have made in the mid-terms and instead intend to learn from this to launch a more cohesive approach to the presidential elections. In Michigan, for example according to Reuters, NextGen went after the Republican Senate candidate by linking her to the Koch brothers, who were found polluting a river with oil waste they bought from a refinery.
“By following the money trail between the Koch brothers’ unprecedented campaign spending and the specific, local harm that their companies and anti-science policies have inflicted on specific communities, NGC will persuade swing voters and drive key demographic cohorts to the polls,” said NextGen.