Congressional Democrats push environmental bill


More than a dozen New York congressional Democrats members have signed on to Concurrent Resolution 52 expressing the sense of Congress that there is a climate emergency which demands immediate attention.

First introduced by Oregon Democrat Earl Blumenauer, the resolution has earned the support of U.S. Reps. Eliot Engel, Adriano Espaillat, José Serrano and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez locally, as well as nearly 60 other House Democrats.

“For years I have said we need to take significant and immediate steps to fix the problem of our changing climate,” Engel said, in a release.

“This cannot wait. We need to reduce our carbon footprint, transform our energy sector, and create millions of new, green jobs for ourselves and our children’s future.”

An identical bill was introduced by U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the upper chamber, attracting six co-sponsors including Kirsten Gillibrand as well as a handful of senators seeking the Democratic presidential nomination like Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar.

Both resolutions currently sit in committee.


Bill proposes federal funding ban for Confederate symbols

U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat once again looks to stop federal dollars from being spent on symbols that promote the Confederacy with H.R. 4179 that he’s working with Pennsylvania Democrat Dwight Evans on.

The bill, if passed into law, would prohibit federal funding to create, maintain or display any Confederate symbol on federal public land, including highways, parks, subways, federal buildings, military bases or streets.

“The Confederate battle flag remains one of the most intractable symbols from the darkest chapter in U.S. history representing racism, slavery, (and) the oppression of African Americans,” Espaillat said, in a release. “In the two years since the violence and death that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia, we must remember that in our recent history, we witnessed men and women don white hoods and torches in the light of day to venerate a symbol of the Confederacy.

“Since that day of violence and death, our nation has continued to witness tragedy after tragedy inspired by white supremacist ideologies and efforts to memorialize white nationalist screed.”