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March 10, 2016

Climate Hawks Vote members overwhelmingly choose Sanders in endorsement vote

Bernie Sanders earns endorsement of grassroots climate Super PAC with 92% of votes cast

With 22,156 votes cast,Bernie Sanders has earned Climate Hawks Vote Political Action’s (CHV) endorsement in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary with an extraordinary 92.2% of the vote.

View the results:


CHV ranked him no. 1 in the Senate for the 113th Congress on our very tough scorecard. Sanders joined the call of our membership for the Attorney General to investigate and prosecute Exxon. Like Climate Hawks Vote Political Action, Bernie Sanders doesn’t accept money from the fossil-fuel industry.

Sanders easily broke through the 75-percent supermajority threshold CHV set for the endorsement vote, which began Thursday, March 3, and ran until 11:59 ET Tuesday, March 8. An equal number of voters received messages on behalf of the candidates — one directly from Hillary Clinton, and one from Bill McKibben in support of Bernie Sanders.

RL Miller, cofounder, states: “Bernie’s climate leadership is shocking the political establishment with big wins across the nation. He is inspiring people to believe again that we can do big things together and stop the destruction of our only home — and that will get them to the voting booth now and in November.”

Miller continues: “We're sincerely grateful to Secretary Hillary Clinton for participating in this process and making it clear how much she values our support. We’re so glad that both contenders for the Democratic nomination say they want to stand up for science and fight to end global-warming pollution. But the best candidate for the job, ready to use every tool to fight climate polluters and Republican climate deniers, is Bernie Sanders. We need clean-energy leadership in the White House. We need a climate revolution.”

Miller explains the impetus behind the Climate Primary: “It’s simple. As a grassroots-based organization, we wanted to listen to our members rather than make a top-down decision. Powered by our members, we’re making the 2016 presidential primary the Climate Primary.”

"The climate leadership of Bernie Sanders isn’t only scientifically necessary -- it’s also politically smart," said Brad Johnson, CHV executive director. "Man-made climate change is deepening the systemic racial and economic injustice that are driving voter concerns this campaign cycle. Voters in every state in the nation are grappling with the impacts of polluted weather, decisions about the future of our energy infrastructure, the threats from an increasingly destabilized global society, and the corruption of our political system by the concentrated wealth of the fossil-fuel industry. Politicians who speak to these real voter concerns reap the benefit at the voting booth. Sanders is doing just that, with honesty and resolve."

The voting breakdown: Of 22156 votes cast, Sanders received 92.2%, Clinton 7.2%, and 0.6% voted for no endorsement. There was an email-verification step to deter ballot stuffing, and the results were audited. Sanders won 86.5% of votes cast by those who were members before balloting began.

Now that Climate Hawks Vote Political Action has endorsed, it intends to be visible in upcoming primary states, sharing climate messages tailored for voters in those states.

CHV is raising funds for its pro-Bernie climate campaigning via ActBlue:


Climate Hawks Vote Political Action is a grassroots-funded Super PAC. Our average contribution is $51. We do not solicit or accept funds from fossil-fuel corporations, billionaires, or lobbyists.



The ‘Climate Primary’: Climate Hawks Vote launches member-driven Presidential Primary endorsement vote

Climate Hawks Vote Political Action (CHV), a grassroots climate Super PAC, is launching the Climate Primary, its endorsement vote for the 2016 Presidential primary.  In an open voting process, CHV members will decide if the PAC will back Secretary Hillary Clinton or Senator Bernie Sanders as the strongest leader on our generation’s greatest challenge, manmade climate change. Every Republican candidate has been disqualified from consideration for their rejection of basic climate science.

Statement from Climate Hawks Vote President RL Miller on today’s announcement:

“Both Secretary Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders are running as climate champions. As the nation’s leading organization building grassroots-based political power for the climate movement, we’re listening to our members for how we should help elect the next Climate President.”

Key facts:

  • Voting will take place at ClimateHawksVote.com/2016vote

  • Sec. Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders are on the ballot

  • The endorsement threshold is a 75% supermajority of all votes cast

  • All people concerned about climate change are encouraged to cast their ballot

  • The voting hashtag: #ClimatePrimary.

  • Voting begins on Thursday, March 3, 2016 and ends at 11:59pm ET on Tuesday, March 8.

  • Results will be announced at 12pm ET on Wednesday, March 9.

This is CHV’s first presidential primary endorsement vote. CHV will campaign to promote the endorsed candidate’s leadership on climate justice, renewable energy, and the fight to end the fossil-fuel industry’s corrupting influence on our democracy. No matter the outcome of the endorsement vote, CHV will vigorously support the Democratic nominee for president in the 2016 general election against the Koch-fueled Republican candidate.

Climate Hawks Vote Political Action does not accept contributions from the fossil-fuel industry or its lobbyists. The average individual contribution to CHV is $55.

A copy of the email CHV sent to our members announcing the CHV Climate Primary is below.


---------- Forwarded message ----------

From: RL Miller, Climate Hawks Vote

Subject: VOTE NOW: You decide who we endorse for president

Friend --

The mission of Climate Hawks Vote is to elect powerful, progressive climate leaders in all levels of office -- including President of the United States.

Beginning today, you and CHV members across the nation have the chance to vote for who is the strongest climate champion in the Democratic Party presidential race.

Vote now for Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders to receive the Climate Hawks Vote endorsement.

This presidential primary is a unique opportunity for climate voters to make an overwhelming difference in the future of our nation’s priorities. Even before the voting began, we’ve been cheering Bernie, Hillary, and Martin O’Malley as they compete for the climate vote, coming to agreement against Keystone XL and for prosecuting Exxon’s climate denial. Ten percent of the voters in the Iowa Democratic caucus named climate change their number-one issue -- and that race came down to coin flips.

So now it’s time to flex our wings and show that we can get out the vote. If Clinton or Sanders receives a supermajority vote of our members, we will endorse that candidate. We will campaign vigorously on your behalf to highlight the climate plans of your chosen candidate. Funds we raise will be used not on expensive television ads but on grassroots organizing and voter education. CHV will also continue to mobilize on behalf of our endorsed climate leaders down the ticket. We’re not settling for the presidency - let’s give our next president a climate-hawk Congress!

Your vote will decide if the Climate Hawks Vote PAC backs Secretary Hillary Clinton or Senator Bernie Sanders as the strongest leader on our generation’s greatest challenge, manmade climate change. Every Republican candidate has been disqualified from consideration for their rejection of basic climate science.

Our endorsement process is 100% member-driven - We can’t claim to speak on behalf of climate voters unless we listen to YOU first. Here are the details:

  • The endorsement vote begins at Thursday, March 3, 2016 and ends at 11:59pm Eastern Time on Tuesday, March 8.

  • Just like in a real election, you will need to work hard to get out the vote your candidate if you want them to win this endorsement. That means getting your friends, family and other like-minded progressives to cast their votes for your candidate as well — on Facebook, Twitter, over email, or however you want to spread the word!

  • CHV will only endorse in this presidential primary if there is overwhelming support for one candidate. That means that we will only endorse if one candidate reaches CHV's supermajority threshold of 75% (three-quarters of votes cast).

  • On Wednesday, March 9 — after reviewing the votes — we will announce the results.

This is important: we will run a 100% fact-based, pro-climate campaign to ensure the eventual Democratic nominee is in a position to win. We are committed to crushing the Republican climate deniers in November. From Donald Trump - who says global warming is a Chinese hoax - to Marco Rubio - who loves water so much he’s willing to let Miami drown with sea level rise - the GOP field puts brain-eating zombies to shame. We are frankly stoked to mobilize Americans for the Democratic climate champion against whoever is the nominee of the Koch-Exxon Party.

Climate Hawks Vote is a special kind of Super PAC - our supporters aren't corporate lobbyists and billionaires, but everyday Americans. We do not accept contributions from the fossil-fuel industry or its lobbyists, and our average individual contribution is $55.

The world needs 2016 to be the year of the climate voter. Pushed relentlessly by grassroots climate activists like you, President Barack Obama has taken some important steps in the right direction to reduce pollution and support renewable energy despite an onslaught of dark money and deception from the fossil-fuel industry. But the world continues to get hotter, and storms, floods, and fires are already destroying too many lives. We need a president who will take on the richest industry on earth and unite Americans to fight for climate justice for all.

We at Climate Hawks Vote believe that all politicians should be held accountable for their words and actions -- and that we voters must do the work.

The voting starts now: Vote to endorse Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton.

your fellow climate hawk,

RL Miller
Climate Hawks Vote

About Climate Hawks Vote: We're a grassroots-funded organization building political power for the climate movement. Hatched in 2014, we endorsed 17 candidates and won 11 of those races. We hold politicians accountable through a sophisticated scorecard tracking not only votes, but also leadership and public engagement on climate. Our board of directors includes Bill McKibben and Jigar Shah.