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Thursday, May 28, 2020
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  • JASPER – First, we zoom in on Jasper, Indiana, Sen. Mike Braun’s hometown. According to the county-level map on the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication website, 60% of Dubois County residents surveyed believe that global warming is happening and will harm future generations. And 83% think we should fund research into renewable energy. Zoom out to the U.S, as a whole, where 67% believe warming is happening and poses a threat. And that’s not a partisan belief; according to polling group Luntz Global, 75% of Republicans under 40 believe that climate change must be addressed by the government and can be done in conservative ways. Americans do get it, even if Washington hasn’t. Until now. Last week, our own Sen. Braun stepped into a national leadership position on the climate crisis. As announced in an Oct. 23 op-ed in “The Hill,” Braun has paired with Sen. Chris Coons (D-Delaware) to found the Senate Climate Solutions Caucus.
  • INDIANAPOLIS  — In Indiana, having one’s head in the clouds is deadly; our state is the second most toxic in all the nation when it comes to pollution, according to a new U.S. News & World Report poll. But thanks to the Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL), fewer politicians will have their heads in the clouds when it comes to an embraceable climate change policy. One week ago, 1,500 members of CCL swept into Washington, D.C. to hold meetings with 90% of House and Senate members. Their agenda? To explain and lobby for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (EICDA), a.k.a. H.R. 763. This act creates the most painless path possible to shift to renewables -- which experts have said we have 12 years to do before we reach a planetary point of no return. Let’s be honest: Any policy that isn’t bipartisan, market-driven, scientifically legit, and revenue-neutral is not going to get passed, nor make a dent in the enormity of the climate menace. The EICDA does all of these things in one elegant package.
  • AUSTIN, Tex. — While half the field of Democratic presidential candidates are busy arousing socialist passions, the other half seems ready to take an ideological chill pill in favor of practicalities. Pete Buttigieg is mostly in the latter camp. Notwithstanding his “porn star presidency” sound bite — a Molotov cocktail of a meme that sent our Twitter feeds spinning — Buttigieg most often comes off as the affable, studious problem-solver we’re starving for, as he did at last month’s CNN Town Hall at South by Southwest. Columnist David Brooks, writing about Mayor Pete in this week’s New York Times, notes that we like Buttigieg because he “deftly detaches progressive policy positions from the culture war” and “eschews grand ideological conflict.” Case in point: Mayor Pete’s statement at the CNN Town Hall about one particular policy will, I predict, emerge as a credible tool for bipartisan movement on the 800-pound gorilla called climate change.
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  • Speaker Huston on Indiana's small businesses under duress
    “We’ve got to make sure we protect and strengthen our small businesses. That first and foremost starts with how we can get people comfortable and safe going outside their homes, return to work and spend money.” - Indiana House Speaker Todd Huston, to the NFIB webinar on Wednesday. Indiana's jobless rate exploded to 16.9% in April due to the pandemic while many of the state's 500,000 small businesses are under duress.
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  • President Trump, Gov. Holcomb address the pandemic in their own words
    The COVID-19 pandemic is becoming the story of our time. As Sen. Todd Young explained, unlike the Great Recession of 2008-09 and the Oil Shock recession of 1979-82, what we are experiencing today is a double hammer: A pandemic and a severe economic panic. The Hoosier State is poised to go from a historic low 3.1% unemployment rate to double digits in the span of a month. At least one pandemic model says 2,400 Hoosiers will die.

    Tough times shift our attention to leadership. Here are quotes from President Trump and Gov. Eric Holcomb as the pandemic approached the U.S. and then impacted our nation and state.

    President Trump

    Jan. 22: “We have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.” – CNBC interview.

    Feb. 10: “Looks like by April, you know, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away.” – New Hampshire rally.

    Feb. 24: “The coronavirus is very much under control in the USA. … Stock market starting to look very good to me!” – On Twitter.

    Feb. 25: “China is working very, very hard. I have spoken to President Xi, and they are working very hard. If you know anything about him, I think he will be in pretty good shape. I think that is a problem that is going to go away.”

    Feb. 26: “We’re going to be pretty soon at only five people. And we could be at just one or two people over the next short period of time. So we’ve had very good luck.” – At a White House news conference.
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