CVSC Releases Early Endorsements for Conservation Champions

The Board of Directors of Conservation Voters of South Carolina (CVSC) announced its endorsement of 8 State Senators and 28 State Representatives in the 2020 election.

“South Carolina needs champions in the House and Senate who will fight for clean air and water, stand up for the rights of citizens to a clean environment, and lead bipartisan coalitions to advance clean energy,” John Tynan, CVSC’s Executive Director said. “We are proud to endorse each of these candidates because they are those champions. They’ve shown that they’ll stand up for conservation time and time again in Columbia, and we wanted to show that they have our support at the ballot box.”

Tynan noted that the strong conservation record of these champions stood out among their peers, earning an endorsement prior to the opening of filing for legislative offices. Each of the Senate endorsements played pivotal leadership roles in defending core environmental protections or advancing critical pro-conservation policies. Each of the House endorsements has at least a 90% lifetime score on CVSC’s conservation scorecard, aided in the defense of environmental protections, or led on key conservation policies.

Conservation Voters cited a wide range of conservation achievements in their endorsements, including the following in the Senate:

  • Chip Campsen (R) - Senate District 43 – for a 94% lifetime conservation score, leading efforts to reauthorize the Conservation Bank, building a bipartisan coalition to stop drilling off our coast, and supporting the nuisance filibuster.
  • Tom Davis (R) - Senate District 46 – for outstanding leadership on clean energy and energy competition issues, steadfast opposition to offshore drilling, and strong support for citizens’ rights to a clean environment by supporting the Nuisance filibuster.
  • Dick Harpootlian (D) - Senate District 20 – fighting efforts to roll back protections on 2/3 of South Carolina’s dams and introducing legislation to hold the PSC accountable.
  • Marlon Kimpson (D) - Senate District 42 – for a 101% lifetime conservation score, supporting the Automatic Stay and Nuisance filibusters and leading a filibuster on critical water quality protections from animal operations.
  • John Matthews (D) - Senate District 39 – for a 94% lifetime conservation score, leading efforts to manage solid waste and advance recycling, protecting citizens’ rights to a healthy environment, and prioritizing environmental protection in decision-making.
  • Thomas McElveen (D) - Senate District - for a 97% lifetime conservation score, leading a filibuster to stop the elimination of the Automatic Stay, and fighting for clean energy and the Conservation Bank.
  • Nikki Setzler (D) - Senate District 26 – for an 82% lifetime conservation score, bipartisan work to reauthorize and fund the SC Conservation Bank, and efforts to protect water quality and quantity.
  • Vincent Sheheen (D) - Senate District 27 – for a 95% lifetime conservation score, leading a filibuster on nuisance rollbacks, and introducing a bold conservation agenda in 2020.

CVSC highlighted high scores and consistent leadership for endorsements in the House, including:

  • West Cox (R) - District 10 – early and consistent opposition against offshore drilling, clean energy, and outdoor recreation (no score yet published first-term Reps).
  • JA Moore (R) - District 15 – taking strong leadership roles on environmental justice, protecting water quality, and holding the PSC accountable (no score yet published first-term Reps).
  • Bobby Cox (R) - District 21 – spoke out early as a supporter of the Energy Freedom Act, opposed offshore drilling, supported 30% protection of SC by 2030, and authored editorial to hold the PSC accountable (no score yet published first-term Reps).
  • Chandra Dillard (D) - District 23 – a 97% lifetime score, leadership on sham recycling, and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Leola Robinson-Simpson (D) - District 25 – a 96% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Rosalyn Henderson Myers (D) - District 31 – a 95% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Mandy Powers Norrell (D) - District 44 – a 92% lifetime score and leadership on shoreline protection and stopping solid waste rollbacks for pyrolysis facilities (melting plastics for fuel).
  • Will Wheeler (D) - District 50 – a 86% lifetime score and leadership on stopping solid waste rollbacks related to pyrolysis facilities (melting plastics for fuel)
  • Laurie Funderburk (D) - District 52 – a 93% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Pat Henegan (D) - District 54 – a 97% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Roger Kirby (D) - District 61 – a 90% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Gilda Cobb-Hunter (D) - District 66 – an 80% lifetime score and leadership to support the Conservation Bank, support for 100% clean energy efforts, and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Chris Wooten (R) - District 69 – authored editorial to hold the PSC accountable, strong supporter of clean energy and energy reform measures, and strong advocate for water quality protection (no score yet published first-term Reps).
  • Wendy Brawley (D) - District 70 – a 100% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Nathan Ballentine (R) - District 71 – an 82% lifetime score and consistent leadership on clean energy, leadership on 100% clean energy efforts, and strong support for land protection.
  • Seth Rose (D) - District 72 – steadfast conservation support on nearly every conservation topic – drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping environmental rollbacks, and more.
  • Beth Bernstein (D) - District 78 – a 92% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Ivory Thigpen (D) - District 79 – an 88% lifetime score and leadership to hold the PSC accountable for implementing the Energy Freedom Act, in addition to and support on offshore drilling, clean energy, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Micah Caskey (R) - District 89 – an 87% lifetime score leadership on energy reforms and holding the PSC accountable and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Rusell Ott (D) - District 93 – a 92% lifetime score and leadership on energy reform and accountability
  • William Cogswell (R) - District 110 – a 98% lifetime score and leadership on protecting 30% of South Carolina by 2030 and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Marvin Pendarvis (D) - District 113 – an 81% lifetime score and leading on water quality protection and clean energy efforts as well as steadfast support on offshore drilling, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Bill Herbkersman (R) - District 118 – a 78% lifetime score and leadership on efforts to increase solar access for homeowners across all of South Carolina and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, and more.
  • Leon Stavrinakis (D) - District 119 – a 96% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Weston Newton (R) - District 120 – a 93% lifetime score and leadership on efforts to increase solar access for homeowners across all of South Carolina and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.
  • Jeff Bradley (R) – District 123 – a 93% lifetime score and steadfast support on offshore drilling, clean energy, plastics, land protection, stopping rollbacks, and more.

Conservation Voters of South Carolina is a statewide nonprofit that fights for South Carolina’s air, land, water, and energy through bipartisan and pragmatic political action. We elect and hold our leaders directly accountable for a safe and healthy South Carolina. Learn more at cvsc.org or follow CVSC on Facebook and Twitter.

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