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

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

Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisSenate Dems introduce bill to prevent Trump from using disaster funds to build wall Klobuchar, O'Rourke visit Wisconsin as 2020 race heats up Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all' 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-CortezNew York hates Amazon Tech looks for lessons from Amazon HQ2 fight 'Tax-the-rich' policies are all the rage in the US 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 GillibrandSenate Dems introduce bill to prevent Trump from using disaster funds to build wall Klobuchar, O'Rourke visit Wisconsin as 2020 race heats up Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all' MORE (D-N.Y.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenSenate Dems introduce bill to prevent Trump from using disaster funds to build wall Klobuchar, O'Rourke visit Wisconsin as 2020 race heats up Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all' 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) SandersSenate Dems introduce bill to prevent Trump from using disaster funds to build wall Klobuchar, O'Rourke visit Wisconsin as 2020 race heats up Sherrod Brown pushes for Medicare buy-in proposal in place of 'Medicare for all' 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.