The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Stephen Kretzmann,, 202-497-1033
Collin Rees,, 308-293-3159

Nearly a Third of Democrats Who Flipped U.S. House Seats Refuse Fossil Fuel Industry Money

New brand of climate leadership emerges


Following yesterday's U.S. midterm elections, which saw a historic surge of Democratic women lead the Democratic Party to take back the U.S. House of Representatives and win races at all levels, Stephen Kretzmann, Executive Director of Oil Change United States had the following statement:

"Despite the fossil fuel industry-sponsored carpet-bombing of advertising against clean energy and climate around the country, several bright spots survived. A new kind of climate leadership is emerging around the country - one that understands the need to stand up to the oil and gas industry.

"This blue wave had a deep green tint. In a sign of things to come, nearly a third of the Democrats who flipped U.S. House seats have signed the No Fossil Fuel Money Pledge. Of the anticipated 33 new Democratic seats taken over from the Republicans, 11 have signed the Pledge, which commits them to not take contributions from the oil, gas, and coal industry and instead prioritize the health of our families, climate, and democracy over fossil fuel industry profits.

"In New Mexico, voters elected Stephanie Garcia Richard to Public Lands Commissioner, to oversee methane regulations and administer public lands. She is committed to stopping the expansion of fracking and drilling for oil and gas in the Permian Basin, which is the largest new potential carbon bomb in the world today. Chevron, the top leaseholder in the Permian, spent millions to defeat her, but lost.

"New Mexican voters also elected Deb Haaland to Congress. Haaland has pledged to vote against all new fossil fuel infrastructure, in line with climate science and the Paris climate goals. She is a strong advocate for Indigenous rights and climate justice.

"In Minnesota, Ilhan Omar ran a proudly fossil-free campaign for Congress and won, speaking frequently about a just transition to build a clean energy economy with good-paying, union jobs, and vocally opposing the Line 3 tar sands pipeline.

"Preliminary analysis of campaign finance data from the Center for Responsive Politics indicates that fossil fuel industry money was less than 1/4 of one percent of all money raised by Democrats running for the House in 2018. Democratic leadership would do well to recall that when the issue of party acceptance of fossil fuel industry donations next surfaces at the DNC."

Oil Change International is a research, communications, and advocacy organization focused on exposing the true costs of fossil fuels and facilitating the ongoing transition to clean energy.

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