WNC congressmen earn low environmental scores

The League of Conservation Voters released its National Environmental Scorecard Feb. 11, giving local congressmen Patrick McHenry and Mark Meadows some of the lowest scores in the country.

McHenry, a Republican representing the 10th District, which includes much of Asheville, earned a 0 from the environmental advocacy group. Meadows, a Republican representing the 11th District, which includes parts of southern and western Buncombe County, didn’t fare much better, earning a 4 percent out of 100.

The scores are based on how they voted on a range of environmental issues in 2013, from public health protections to clean energy to land and wildlife conservation. The North Carolina average House score was 27 percent and national average House score was 43 percent.

Here’s the full press release from the NC League of Conservation Voters:

NC League of Conservation Voters today unveiled scores for the North Carolina delegation released this morning as part of the League of Conservation Voters 2013 National Environmental Scorecard. The Scorecard reflects how continued attacks on our environment and public health safeguards have led to all-time low scores for House Republicans, a sharp contrast with President Obama’s leadership on these issues.

“It was another year of extreme attacks on our environment from far too many in Congress, but allies like Representatives Price and Watt stand out for putting North Carolina values first,” said NCLCV’s director of governmental affairs, Dan Crawford. “Despite a record-breaking year of climate change impacts, members like Representatives Ellmers and McHenry put their polluting special interest allies first.”

The 2013 Scorecard covers votes during the first session of the 113th Congress. It includes 13 Senate votes and 28 House votes on issues ranging from public health protections to clean energy to land and wildlife conservation. It comes on the heels of another record-breaking year of climate change impacts with more than 100 climate change deniers serving in Congress.

In North Carolina, 3 House members and 1 Senator earned a score of 85 percent or greater on the 2013 Scorecard, while 7 House members and 1 Senator earned an abysmal score of 15 percent or less. The average House score in 2013 for North Carolina was 27 percent and the average Senate score was 50 percent percent, both below the national average.

Nationwide, the average House score in 2013 was 43 percent and the average Senate score was 58%. Members who defeated 2012 members of LCV’s Dirty Dozen have an average 2013 score of 92 percent, while the Dirty Dozen members that they replaced had an average lifetime score of just 12 percent.

“There is a jarring disconnect between the frightening climate change developments of 2013 and the results of the 2013 National Environmental Scorecard,” said LCV President Gene Karpinski. “Together with our allies in the Senate, the Obama Administration was able to defend against the worst attacks on our environment and protect public health.”

North Carolina’s Congressional Delegation 2013:

Sen. Richard Burr, 15%
Sen. Kay Hagan, 85%
Rep. G.K. Butterfield, 86%
Rep. Renee Ellmers, 0%
Rep. Walter Jones, 18%
Rep. David Price, 93%
Rep. Virginia Foxx, 4%
Rep. Howard Coble, 4%
Rep. Mike McIntyre, 32%
Rep. Richard Hudson, 4%
Rep. Robert Pittenger, 4%
Rep. Patrick McHenry, 0%
Rep. Mark Meadows, 4%
Rep. Mel Watt, 96%
Rep. George Holding, 4%

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About Jake Frankel
Jake Frankel is an award-winning writer and reporter who enjoys covering a wide range of topics, from politics and government to business, education and entertainment.

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