Enviropolitics blog questions strategies of Environmental Groups

Frank Brill puts up an interesting read over at the Enviropolitics blog searching for answers about the recent endorsement decisions and rhetoric of the state Environmental organizations:

The New Jersey Environmental Federation (NJEF), one of the largest enviro-activist organizations in the state has endorsed not only a (gulp) Republican for governor but (double-gulp) one who served in the federal government under Bush/Chaney.

Yes, we’re talking about Chris Christie.

Surprised? Amazed? And maybe a bit baffled?

We are, too.

It was one thing for the Sierra Club to endorse former NJDEP Commissioner Chris Daggett’s independent campaign for governor. But it’s another for the NJEF, which had originally announced it would make no endorsement in the race, to come out for Christie.

And on the Sierra Club’s endorsement of Christie and criticisms of Corzine, which have been over the top and relentless:

The pounding culminated in the astonishing claim that Corzine is the worst environmental governor in history.

Whoa! Did they forget all about Christie (Honey, I shrunk the DEP) Whitman and Jim “fast track development” McGreevey?

If they think shrinking the DEP was bad, just wait for Christie who wants to “Restore the DEP to it’s core mission. Brill wonders why Corzine doesn’t get any credit for the work he has done from these groups:

Is this the same Jon Corzine who the rest of us have seen signing one environmental bill after another? The governor who got out ahead of virtually all other states in setting aggressive goals for greenhouse gas reductions. The guy who has backed cap-and-trade, solar-energy incentives and offshore wind power development?

And, even if the Sierra Club wasn’t satisfied with Corzine’s record, it’s one thing to back another candidate to display your convictions but totally another to flay a sitting governor who just might win re-election. That, we submit, is just plain dumb.

I haven’t understood the politics of their approach all along. I just don’t understand how Chris Christie is a logical choice for people that have been disappointed with the current Governors policies and neither do other groups. Brill says that the flaw in their plan is that Corzine may win, so all of this opposition and rhetoric may come back to bite them. We’ll have to see how this one shakes out.

Comments (2)

  1. Teedyuscung

    The DEP is largely run by holdovers from the Machiavellian McGreevey administration who thrive in a stifling cesspool of cronyism and nepotism. Rather than advocate for the resources or for the public good they channel their limited abilities into self-serving schemes. Now the bureaucratic cement paralyzes everything. It’s an embarrassing Mediocracy that does not serve the Governor well and unnecessarily alienates key constituencies. Did they do what they do best and promote Lisa Jackson up and out? She was good at protecting her own public image and in resume-building. But there is much left to do to right the ship. This is indeed a high price to pay… but one easily foreseeable.

  2. FormerBureaucrat

    This situation with the environmental protection groups denying their support for Corzine is exactly the same as when the CWA (Communications Workers of America) supported Christine Todd Whitman because they were upset with the negotiating tactics of then-Governor Florio in their contract talks.  Whitman and the Republicans dangled all kinds of goodies to the state workers for their support, all to be reneged-on once Whitman won the election.  Whitman was much worse over all for state workers than Florio had ever been and by witholding payments to the state pension plan to pay for the tax cuts, Governor Whitman set up the current fiscal mess that that the state now suffers from.  The point is that in what world is a Republican Governor ever better for state employees than a Democrat?  This is the same question that environmental groups should be asking themselves.  When has a Republican Governor of a national party that denies global warming and disputes the nature of science ever been better for the environment than a Democrat?  Republicans will never be better and by throwing their support to candidates other than Corzine, environmental activists are squandering their credibility that will haunt them for years to come.  


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