US senator argues with school children about climate change policy

'I've been doing this for 30 years. I know what I’m doing'

Sarah Harvard
New York
Sunday 24 February 2019 00:53
Comments
US Senator Dianne Feinstein argues with primary school children about climate change

Democratic senator Dianne Feinstein got into a heated exchange with primary-age school children over the Green New Deal, firmly stating that she will not support the renewable energy plan.

A group of schoolchildren stopped by the California senator’s San Francisco office on Friday to call on her to support the scheme, spearheaded by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, that calls for net-zero greenhouse emissions and 100 per cent renewable energy in the US by 2030.

However, the conversation between Ms Feinstein, 85, and the children apparently escalated into a confrontation with the Democratic lawmaker criticised for the tone she took.

The testy exchange was captured on video by a campaign group and heavily edited before being posted online.

In the video the California Democrat tells the children she could not support the Green New Deal because “there’s no way to pay for it”.

But one girl replied to say: “We have tons of money going to [the] military.”

“I’ve been doing this for 30 years,” Ms Feinstein said. “I know what I’m doing. You come in here and you say it has to be my way or the highway. I don’t respond to that.”

She added: “I’ve gotten elected. I just ran. I was elected by almost a million-vote plurality, and I know what I’m doing. So, you know, maybe people should listen a little bit.”

Ms Ocasio-Cortez’s scheme would “not pass the Senate”, the veteran politician told the children. After one asked her to vote for it anyway, she said: “I may do that ... but it’s not a good resolution.”

Supporters of Ms Feinstein said the video only showed a part of the interaction between the children and the politician. In events not shown, Ms Feinstein said she presented her visitors with copies of the environmental bill she is supporting in the Senate instead of the Green New Deal.

“If you have a problem with it, you can let me know,” Ms Feinstein told the children later in the video.

Ms Feinstein defended the scrutinised exchange as “a spirited discussion”, NBC News reported.

“Unfortunately, it was a brief meeting but I want the children to know they were heard loud and clear,” she added.

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

The schoolchildren’s visit was organised by Sunrise Movement, a anti-climate change youth organisation that is backing the Green New Deal legislation.

Adults from the group also lobbied Ms Feinstein during the visit.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in