2018 Elections: A Fight for Clean Water

US Capitol Building at sunrise. Photo credit: trekandshoot/Shutterstock

This year Clean Water Action is fighting back against the most anti-environment Congress in decades

Special interests spent a lot of money in the 2016 elections to stack Congress and the Trump Administration with their friends. And it has paid off. Our elected officials are putting polluter profits before people and they are giving the fossil fuel industry and other corporate donors whatever they want. Their dirty water agenda calls for gutting the most vital protections for our water, air, climate and health. In 2017, 50 senators and 178 representatives voted for the anti-environment choice in every single priority vote, and the EPA has started the process to roll back over 60 separate protections.

Representing polluters, not people

Congress and Trump’s EPA are dismantling environmental protections even though the overwhelming majority of Americans support protecting our water, air, climate and health. The oil and gas industry spent more than $103 million in the 2016 election to elect cronies to office. As payback for this support, in its first 100 days in 2017, Congress record recorded 42 anti-environmental votes.

It’s time for our representatives to stop listening to polluters and start listening to people!

What we're going to do about it

Clean Water Action offices will engage on key state and local races in all our states, seeking to protect pro-environmental majorities where they exist and flip control of chambers currently with anti-environmental majorities. Below are our priority federal races. We'll work on dozens of other state, local, and federal races in the fall of 2018.

Endorsements by state

Highlighted endorsements

US Senate

  • Defeat Senator Cruz,0% pro-environment voting record in 2017-18
  • Defend Senator Warren, 100% pro-environment voting record in 2017-18
  • Defend Senator Stabenow, 89% pro-environment voting record
  • Defend Senator Klobuchar and Senator Smith. Senator Klobuchar: 100% pro-environment voting record
  • Defend Senator Casey, 89% pro-environment voting record
Rhode Island
  • Defend Senator Whitehouse, 100% pro-environment voting record
  • Defend Senator Kaine, 100% pro-environment voting record

US House of Representatives

  • 7th district: Defeat Tim Walberg, 0% pro-environment voting record on Clean Water issues in 2017-18. We've endorsed Gretchen Driskell. Learn more.
  • 8th district: Defeat Mike Bishop, 4% environmental voting record. We've endorsed Elissa Slotkin. Learn more.
  • Elect Andy Levin. Read more here.
  • 11th district: Elect Haley Stevens.
  • 2nd district: Defeat Jason Lewis, 0% pro-environment score in 2017-18. We've endorsed Angie Craig. Read more here
  • 3rd district: Defeat Erik Paulsen, 9% pro-environment voting record in 2017-18. We've endorsed Dean Phillips. Learn more.
New Jersey
  • 3rd District: Defend Dwight Evans.
  • 4th District: We have endorsed Madeline Dean.
  • 5th district (was 7th): Elect Mary Gay Scanlon.
  • 6th district: Defeat Ryan Costello, 39% pro- environment voting record.
  • 7th district (was 15th): OPEN.
  • 10th district: Defeat Barbara Comstock, 9% pro-environment voting record. We've endorsed Jennifer Wexton. Learn more.

We have a strong history of electing clean water leaders

Clean Water Action was founded during the campaign to pass the Clean Water Act, and since then has worked to win strong health and environmental protections by bringing issue expertise, solution-oriented thinking and people power to the table. We do this by organizing strong grassroots groups and coalitions, and campaigning to elect environmental candidates and to solve environmental and community problems.

For more than 45 years Clean Water Action has built the movement for clean water and a healthier environment, person by person, door by door. Our  professional  field canvassers are community organizers: every day they knock on doors or talk on the phone to people across the country to educate and motivate, to sign up new members, and give Americans the knowledge they need to protect clean water, their health, and their communities.

We make a differnce when we put our field and phone organizing to work for pro-environment candidates

  • In 2015 our Northern Virginia field canvass went all in on Delegate Kathleen Murphy, helping her win a January special election by 326 votes and then get re-elected by 188 votes in the subsequent general election.
  • In 2016 we used partner funding to set up a field operation in New Hampshire that knocked on almost 30,000 doors, helping Maggie Hassan win election to the US Senate by just 743 votes.
  • Early in 2016, our New Jersey staff noticed an opportunity: pro-environment candidate Josh Gottheimer was taking on an anti- environment incumbent in a district they felt was winnable. Clean Water Action committed to this race early, and in the summer of 2016 the field canvass identified 9,000 registered voters while our phone canvass called 23,000 members in the district. Gottheimer won by just under 15,000 votes. In 2017 we consolidated our organizing in this district by knocking on 130,700 doors, having face-to-face conversations with 62,600 constituents, and building a database of over 26,000 pro-environment voters.

Targeted field operations win elections for pro-environment candidates. We know how to target to win.