Greens, steel union team up to elect Senate Dems

Greens, steel union team up to elect Senate Dems

A major environmental group and steelworkers union are putting nearly $4 million into a super-PAC to elect Democrats to the Senate.

The League of Conservation Voters Action Fund and United Steelworkers Works rolled out the effort Friday, saying their aim is to elect pro-conservation, pro-jobs candidates.

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“The Jobs Fund brings together conservationists and labor to elect the right leadership to Congress, helping us build a clean energy economy, creating jobs in America while also protecting our clean air and combatting climate change,” League President Gene Karpinski said in a statement.

“Clearly, control of the U.S. Senate is in play, and this effort to directly communicate with tens of thousands of voters in these key states could well have an impact on the outcome of the election,” said Steelworkers President Leo Gerard. “We are proud to continue this partnership that we feel is necessary to take our message to the voters.”

The new political action committee is supporting Democrat Katie McGinty against Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Democrat Deborah Ross against Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrDemocratic incumbents bolster fundraising advantage in key Senate races McConnell gets GOP wake-up call Senate approves short-term debt ceiling increase MORE (R-N.C.), Democrat Ted Strickland against Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanMcConnell gets GOP wake-up call Biden shows little progress with Abraham Accords on first anniversary The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - After high drama, Senate lifts debt limit MORE (R-Ohio), and Democrat Catherine Cortez-Masto against Rep. Joe Heck (R-Nev.) in the race for Nevada's open Senate seat.

Both groups were not specific in what their strategies would be, saying only that they plan to focus on “large-scale voter persuasion and mobilization.”

Tight races like these could shift the balance of power in the Senate. Democrats need to flip five seats — or four if they also win the White House — to claim control of the chamber.

Though environmental groups and unions have been at odds in the past on major issues like the Keystone XL pipeline, they said they have common ground on issues like creating clean-energy manufacturing jobs and opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The steelworkers union's membership of more than 850,000 stretches beyond steel plants and includes industries like chemicals, pharmaceuticals, rubber, glass, utilities and healthcare.