By Laura Barron-Lopez - 02/15/14 11:13 AM EST
Lawmakers and campaign consultants say billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer is causing some anxiety for Democrats ahead of the midterm elections.
Steyer, founder of the green group NextGen Climate Action, has risen to the forefront of political donors after throwing $8 million behind Terry McAullife to clench the Virginia gubernatorial race.
Steyer has signaled he isn't worried about the anxiety.
"If it makes them [Democratic leaders] nervous, tough. That's just tough," Steyer said in an interview. "People who argue for the status quo and say they're sympathetic, and they understand what we're trying to do, but 'now is not the time,' are not helpful," he said.
Steyer has displayed a willingness to target Democratic Sen. Mary LandrieuMary Landrieu oil is changing the world and Washington Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Republican announces bid for Vitter’s seat MORE (La.). Landrieu's seat is one that may be critical for Democrats to hold power in the Senate.
Steyer is also helping Democrats, however,
Next week, he will host a Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee fundraiser for candidates who back his position on climate change.
Steyer will also head to Washington, D.C. next week to moderate a panel at the Democratic Governors Association annual meeting, which will discuss options for states to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.