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Statement on the Election of Rep. Johnson to Speaker of the House

The following is a statement from Beth Shipp, Executive Director of Mothers Out Front: 

In a time when the climate crisis is an existential threat to our children, our communities, and the  planet, our Mothers Out Front constituency of more than 35,000 moms in all 50 states has expressed its deep disappointment in the elevation of Rep. Mike Johnson – a champion of the fossil fuel industry in the Gulf South and climate denier – to Speaker of the House.

The Speaker of the House is second in line to the presidency; putting the gavel in the hands of a Member who has consistently shown that he will put corporate profits over the people he serves is irresponsible and reckless for our climate future. Rep. Johnson’s track record and stance on climate change, his opposition to clean energy initiatives, and the fact that he received nearly $240,000 in campaign contributions from oil and gas companies since 2018 clearly demonstrate a lack of leadership in this most critical time in our fight for climate justice . 

Louisiana is home to “Cancer Alley,” a place where – according to US government scientists – “the risk of cancer is the highest in the country due to airborne toxins emitted by a nearby chemical plant.” In the first major legislation passed under his Speakership, House Republicans cut billions of dollars in consumer rebates for energy efficiency upgrades that had previously been included in President Biden’s landmark climate legislation, the Inflation Reduction Act – a bill that was already hamstrung by its ability to staunch climate impacts to contain harms, rather than prevent them.

We at Mothers Out Front firmly believe that responsible and science-based climate policies are crucial to safeguarding the future of our children. Our mission remains unchanged – to fight for a world where all children, families, communities, and neighborhoods can live healthy, safe lives – and we will continue to advocate for policies that address the climate crisis and protect our children’s well-being. We will use the collective power of our vote to ensure elected officials and those in positions of power do the same.