Kamala Harris endorses Ocasio-Cortez’s ‘Green New Deal’

Kamala Harris endorses Ocasio-Cortez’s ‘Green New Deal’
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThe symbol of 'Wakanda' and black political vision Seven big decisions facing Biden in 2020 primary Sanders dominates, Buttigieg surges in 2020 social media battle MORE (D-Calif.) on Monday endorsed the "Green New Deal," a proposal that sets a goal of getting 100 percent of U.S. electricity from renewable energy.

"I support a Green New Deal," she said during a CNN town hall in Iowa. 

"Climate change is an existential threat to us, and we have got to deal with the reality of it," she added.

Harris, who hadn't previously thrown her support behind the proposal popularized by freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezFeminists should thank God for capitalism Progressive group comes out against Biden's White House bid Trump says Ocasio-Cortez is 'correct' in comments about VA MORE (D-N.Y.), doubled down on the endorsement in a tweet Monday night following her remark at the town hall.

"I support a Green New Deal. Climate change is an existential threat to all of us, and we have got to deal with the reality of it," she tweeted.

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Harris became the latest high-profile Democrat and 2020 presidential candidate to indicate some level of support for the Green New Deal, joining Sens. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandGillibrand 'not worried' about being 'discounted' in 2020 race Cory Booker releases 10 years of tax returns Buttigieg gets first congressional endorsement MORE (D-N.Y.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenColbert links large 2020 Dem field to Avengers: 'A group of every available person in the universe' Seven big decisions facing Biden in 2020 primary Sanders dominates, Buttigieg surges in 2020 social media battle MORE (D-Mass.) as well as former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro.

Harris, Gillibrand, Warren and Castro are also each running or exploring a run for president.

The Green New Deal has attracted the support of a number of progressives. Last year, Ocasio-Cortez proposed that House Democrats create a select committee for a Green New Deal. She has pushed for such goals in the new Congress along with Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersElection analyst says Biden could face uphill battle attracting small-dollar donors Gillibrand 'not worried' about being 'discounted' in 2020 race Biden's sloppy launch may cost him MORE (I-Vt.).

During the town hall Monday night, Harris also said lawmakers "who are in the pocket of big coal and big oil" don't fully understand the risk of climate change and said children "need to be able to breathe clean air and drink clean water."

"I think that the fact that we have policymakers who are in the pockets of big oil and big coal don't fully appreciate the fact that we are looking at something that is presenting an existential threat to our country," Harris said.

"And, listen, all children need to be able to breathe clean air and drink clean water, and we've got to have a commitment to a policy that will allow that to happen for ourselves and our children and our grandchildren. And right now we don't," she added.