Hartford, CT – Today, the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters (CTLCV) released its initial endorsements for the Connecticut General Assembly. All candidates for legislative office were invited to complete CTLCV’s Survey on the Environment earlier this summer. Over 100 candidates responded, and CTLCV’s Endorsement Committee has reviewed their answers and begun interviewing those who identified the environment as one of their top priorities. Today’s endorsements represent the first of several rounds.
Candidates receiving CTLCV’s endorsements are:
“Connecticut deserves lawmakers who will fight for renewable energy, clean air and water, and open space,” said Lori Brown, CTLCV Executive Director. “All of the candidates we endorsed today have either established themselves as true leaders in the legislators or made real commitments to be champions for the environment if elected.
ABOUT THE CANDIDATES
Beth Bye is in her fourth term serving the people of the 5th Senate District. She has been a longtime environmental champion and a notable advocate for water issues, where she most recently led the charge against water diversion. She has a lifetime score of 91% according to our 2018 Environmental Scorecard, a testament to her firm commitment to environmental stewardship.
Matt Lesser represented the 100th House District before running for Sen. Paul Doyle’s open seat in the 9th Senate District. During his time in the House, Lesser worked tirelessly to address his constituents’ concerns about snapping turtles, and his leadership led to crucial protections being passed in 2018. Lesser also led the charge to support bans on fracking waste, and has been a strong proponent of the State Water Plan.
Christine Cohen, running for the 12th Senate District, is the owner of Cohen Bagels in Madison and a longtime member of the Guilford Land Trust. She expressed real concern about carbon emissions and pollution in Connecticut, and has already taken steps to ensure her own business operates in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner.
Mary Daugherty Abrams, candidate for the 13th Senate District, is running against one of the most vocal anti-environment legislators in the General Assembly: Len Suzio. In contrast to Suzio, Abrams voiced strong concerns for the health of our children. Speaking as a grandmother and former teacher, Abrams indicated her support for bans to toxic tire mulch in playgrounds and carcinogenic flame retardant chemicals in children’s clothing—two initiatives Suzio actively worked to oppose.
Vickie Nardello previously represented the 89th Assembly District from 1995 – 2013. During her time in the legislature, she had a 97% Lifetime Score in CTLCV’s Environmental Scorecard, which tracks lawmakers’ votes on the environment. A strong advocate for clean energy, Nardello helped create the Connecticut Green Bank, the nation’s first bank dedicated to investing in renewable energy projects. She expressed a keen interest in aggressively growing Connecticut’s investments in clean energy. She is challenging incumbent Sen. Rob Sampson, who received a score of 31% in CTLCV’s 2018 Environmental Scorecard.
Tony Hwang is the incumbent Senator representing the 28th District. He has been a champion for clean water throughout his time in the legislature, and a strong ally for open space and land conservation. Even during fraught budget negotiations and difficult committee battles, Hwang has made the environment a priority.
David Lawson is once again running for the 30th Senate District seat currently held by Sen. Craig Miner. As chair of the Environment Committee, Miner actively worked to weaken environmental protections and block key bills from being considered. In contrast, Lawson has worked with local land trusts to preserve open space. As Chair of the New Milford Board of Education, he is also working to add solar panels to schools already undergoing roof repairs. He is firmly committed to protecting our clean water, clean air, and open space.
Norm Needleman is currently serving his fourth term as First Selectman in Essex, where he has been a thoughtful leader on environmental issues. He is running for the 33rd Senate District, and has taken a strong stance about the importance of combatting climate change and investing in clean energy to grow our economy.
Alexandra Bergstein is running for the 36th Senate District. Though she would be a first-term Senator, she has a long history in the legislature, working behind the scenes on critical protections to ban toxic tire mulch from playgrounds and carcinogenic flame retardants from children’s clothing. Those measures will likely be considered again in the next legislative session, making it crucial to elect lawmakers who put the health and safety of our children first.
Mike Demicco represents the 21st House District. As Co-Chair of the Environment Committee, Demicco has been a strong ally for clean energy, conservation, and key protections, and helped pass bans on harmful pesticides. He listens to the concerns of the environmental community and has always strived to advance our priorities within the Committee.
Mary Mushinsky was first elected to the Connecticut General Assembly in 1980, where she has been a tireless leader on land preservation and expanding our public parks and trails. As the representative in the 85th House District, Mushinsky holds a Lifetime Score of 97% in CTLCV’s Environmental Scorecard. She has also been active with the Wallingford Energy Conservation Commission and currently serves as Deputy Assistant Speaker of the House.
James Albis has been a key leader for climate change preparedness while representing the 99th House District. Recognizing the threat of rising sea levels, Albis helped shepherd key bills through the legislature in 2018. He has been a reliable champion in committee rooms and behind-the-scenes, rallying other lawmakers to the side of the environment when it matters most.
Jonathan Steinberg was first elected to represent the 136th House District in 2010, and he swiftly established himself as a true environmental champion. Steinberg helped pass ambitious goals to reduce Connecticut’s carbon emissions in the last legislative session.
Terrie Wood represents the 141st House District, where she has been a strong proponent of land preservation and conservation. She also strongly supports water as a public trust, and has been a vocal advocate to restrict single-use plastic bags and promote more sustainable alternatives.
Gail Lavielle is currently serving her fourth term representing the 143rd House District. She strongly supports promoting electric vehicles in Connecticut, which would expand consumers’ choices and help reduce vehicle emissions. Lavielle has been a thoughtful leader within her party and across the aisle, helping to build consensus on the importance of protecting our open space and clean water and air.
This information is paid for by the CTLCV Political Action Committee. This message was made independent of any candidate or political party. Contributions to the CTLCV PAC of $5,000 or more were made by CTLCV, Inc. and David Bingham. Additional information about the CTLCV PAC may be found on the State Elections Enforcement Commission's website (ct.gov/seec).