Politics

Gillibrand on Green New Deal: ‘Why Not at Least Try?’

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) endorsed Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (D., N.Y.) proposal during a Tuesday interview on MSNBC's "All In" with Chris Hayes.

"We want to see a green economy in the next decade, not because it's easy, but because it's hard," she said. "We need a moon shot, like John F. Kennedy said, ‘we're going to put a man on the moon in the next 10 years,' as a measure of America's innovation, entrepreneurial spirit. Why not make the same national call to action, to say ‘let's create a green economy in the next decade?'"

Gillibrand went on to espouse the "important components" of the Green New Deal: "clean air and water as a right, cleaning up all these superfund sites and al these brownfields, making sure we invest in green technologies and teach young people how to build solar panels, and do wind turbines, and do geothermal and hydropower and biofuels." She cited success in New York with renewable energy as proof.

The senator also said the Green New Deal would put the United States in a "better place to excel in next-generation development," and that "we should be competing with China, we should be outshining China."

"There's so much opportunity in this bill for economic growth and really fixing things that are broken," she said. "So why not have an aspirational goal? And maybe some things are hard to get to, and maybe we won't actually get there, but why not at least try?"

Some of the aspirations of the Green New Deal include plans to "totally overhaul transportation by massively expanding electric vehicle manufacturing, build charging stations everywhere, build out high-speed rail at a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary, create affordable public transit available to all, with goals to replace every combustion-engine vehicle," according to a FAQ page on Ocasio-Cortez's website, which her office later deleted.

The FAQ also proposed replacing or upgrading every building America with green energy alternatives and providing economic security to people "unwilling to work." Ocasio-Cortez's office claims the document is unfinished and was released by mistake.