NextGen to target state legislature races in Washington, Oregon

NextGen is turning its attention to elections for state legislatures in an attempt to get environmental lawmakers into Washington’s and Oregon’s state capitol.

Wednesday’s announcement is the first foray into state legislature politics for NextGen, which up until now has focused its spending and advocacy on United States Senate races in Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire and Michigan, and gubernatorial races in Florida, Pennsylvania and Maine.

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“NextGen Climate is working in races where voters care about climate, and supports candidates who are on the right side of climate policy,” the group, backed by billionaire climate activist Tom SteyerThomas (Tom) Fahr SteyerSteyer: I don't think it's possible to buy the presidency New poll catapults Buttigieg to frontrunner position in Iowa Deval Patrick: a short runway, but potential to get airborne MORE, said in a statement.

“While Washington, D.C., is mired in gridlock, we need leaders at the state level who are willing to act now to address climate change and build the clean energy future our kids deserve,” it said.

NextGen’s stated goal is “to ensure that both Washington and Oregon have a pro-climate majority in their respective state legislatures in 2015.”

The group named two candidates it is supporting in each state’s senate, all Democrats: Tami Green and Matt Isenhower in Washington, and Sara Gelser and Chuck Riley in Oregon.

In each state, NextGen is working in partnership with the state’s affiliate of the League of Conservation Voters.