Billionaire activist to meet with White House officials
June 24th, 2014
08:32 AM ET
5 years ago

Billionaire activist to meet with White House officials

Washington (CNN) – Tom Steyer, the billionaire environmentalist who’s pledged to spend millions in this year’s midterm contests, will discuss climate change with top White House officials and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew this week, according to officials.

At the Wednesday meeting, Steyer will also sit down with former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulsen and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry Cisneros to confer on a forthcoming report assessing the economic effects of climate change.

The Steyer-funded outside advocacy group, NextGen Climate, pledged in May to spend $100 million in midterm election races to go after so-called “science deniers” who reject claims humans are responsible for global warming and climate change.

Steyer has set himself up as the chief adversary to the Koch brothers, the billionaire industrialists who fund a web of conservative groups. He's a fierce opponent of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which is still under consideration by the Obama administration.

Last week President Barack Obama went after Republicans who deny man made climate change, saying they posed a “serious threat” the country’s future and comparing their claims to suggesting the moon is made of cheese.

The White House embarked upon a major environment effort starting in early June, when Obama unveiled proposed new restrictions on coal plants. This week other members of his administration will discuss the effects of climate change that scientists say are already being seen, including extreme weather.

The President himself will address the issue Wednesday at the League of Conservation Voters’ annual dinner in Washington.


Filed under: climate change • Global Warming • Tom Steyer
soundoff (82 Responses)
  1. Gunderson

    Aw, Humm,
    So what happened to Chicken Little? Nothing! He is alive and well right here in River City! But I digress children. Listen to your Nanny. Who else can you trust?

    June 24, 2014 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  2. just asking

    a rich liberal billionaire buying access, laws, regulations that the average tax paying person will end up ultimately footing the bill for their war on coal and all the green energy boondoggles like solyndra. but this is all just fine with the very same people that attack and villainize others for looking out for their interests. the lies, deceit and hypocrisy of the left just keeps becoming more and more evident.

    June 24, 2014 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  3. Kinard

    To hell with the Earth. What's needed is more and more pollution with people working for little of nothing. IF the coastal waters become to deep to tread, we can place various lower wage groups close to these areas, and never have to worry about old age pensions or healthcare for the aged. If the air becomes too rancid to breath, we can strip the lungs from lower classes and clean the air through their lungs before it gets to us. If the Earth loses it's ability to give us the needed resources needed to fuel our industries we can send slaves to outlying planets and moons, to mine needed resources. Regardless we come out ahead. We've got the money and lobbying power to make it all happen. Plus, we have people who believe party politics trumps any other motivation or science available to modern man.

    Darwin, was completely wrong. Some species fail to evolve. They speed toward their own extinction, fat dumb and happy.

    June 24, 2014 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  4. salty dog

    So, because China cornered the market on solar panels, the industry is worthless, sounds like someone has been drinking to much Koch, rots much more than teeth, listen to yourself.

    June 24, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    ""Common good". Wow. Just what would that be and who determines what is best? "

    You know, for someone who claims to love the Constitution so much, you seem to be pretty underwhelmingly informed abut its contents.

    June 24, 2014 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    "@The Real Tom P- Im pro-choice and have no interest in that pointless debate besides to call it out as a waste of time. You say inaction and I say people need to face the truth even if its bad. If your actions make no change in the outcome then why waste time, energy, and treasure?"

    Some things are worth attempting to accomplish even though you fear you might fail. They're known as "the right thing to do."

    June 24, 2014 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  7. salty dog

    Looking out for their interests, at the expense of your drinking water, fresh air, unspoiled watershed, spoken like a true critical thinker, straight from fox to your mouth, that place will rot your brains man, I quit going to MacDonalds, they have fox news blaring, with orders to not shut it off, so I left, you did me a favor.

    June 24, 2014 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  8. salty dog

    That's fat, dumb, rich, and happy.

    June 24, 2014 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  9. smith

    @Silence-First, I don`t listen to Rush si I have no idea what he says. Second, Cows being worse for the enviroment than cars is a fact not a conspiracy theory. Third, you seem to think that the notion of death is a conspiracy theory or somebody getting cancer can always be prevented.

    June 24, 2014 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  10. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Silence, would you google Koch donations and charities please. You will find those numbers extraordinary"

    Surely you aren't suggesting we all follow merrily along off the cliff simply because these two men are ... well, charitable in their endowments? Come on, tom. Seriously?

    June 24, 2014 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "you seem to think that the notion of death is a conspiracy theory or somebody getting cancer can always be prevented.

    Nice straw men you got there. Is that premium straw?

    June 24, 2014 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  12. rob

    Funny how the Dems and the supine liberal media lapdogs are outraged over "Sinister Conservative Outside" money affecting campaigns but they think nothing of the same type of "Liberal Outside" money players being invited to the WHITE HOUSE to discuss strategy for the upcoming mid terms.

    The liberal media is not a credible source for objective news reporting. To quote Paul Ryan during the hearings with the IRS director this week "I don't believe you" CNN

    June 24, 2014 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  13. Free Man in the Republic of Texas

    QUICK !!!

    LOOK over there ....... Koch Brothers !!!

    June 24, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  14. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Lynda/Minnesota says:
    June 24, 2014 11:05 am at 11:05 am
    “Like you we’re finally feeling some better weather but fall is just around the corner.”

    We finally were able to assess the damage to our cabin when the furnace pilot light went out during the worst of the sub-zero temps. Broken water pump, broken holding tank, and a few spit pipes. Thank goodness the pilot light stayed on under the water heater. All is well now (finally have a working toilet again) and yes we dodged a bullet … it could have been much worse. So, no. I’m not looking for a repeat this winter and am very much enjoying what we have now.

    Glad you guys got it together and it wasn't as bad as it could have been! I'm enjoying ours too, in between rainfall. We've been getting a lot of that too. But our overall temps are about 75-80, mostly sunny and not too humid.... Yet. The weekends have been gorgeous
    ----------------------------------------------------–
    So happy to "hear" that my girls didn't get hit with whatever the hell is hitting your part of the country..mostly rain, rain, and more rain.

    June 24, 2014 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  15. Marie MD

    @rick, climate change is just one of the things the right wing nutsos can be demeaned about.
    I don't have time nor is there enough room to list their faults and backwards thinking.
    @henry, see above re the backwards group. They are the ones who can't let religion go when it comes to anything and everything. Dinosaurs and humans roaming the earth together. LOL
    The age of the planet. Simpletons all.

    June 24, 2014 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  16. guest

    The election contribution limits need to be re-established. Spend your money on public services and education, not on back room deals with politicians. This legislation for profit, pay to play, needs to stop, it is killing our country, and ultimately our planet. Mr. Murdoch needs to wake up and repoint the MSM to helping educate the population instead of feeding them misinformation, half naked celeberties, and koo-koo clock theories about how deregulating fossil fuels, banking, and everything else is good for the people, country, and planet.

    Regulations were put in place for a reason, selective rewriting of american history does not change that the business owners put the people and country in the poo, leading to regulations. It is time for America to re approach utilitarian goals and stop concentrating on ayn rand's "selfishness is a virtue". It takes business leaders to drive it, and it needs to be driven.

    June 24, 2014 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  17. smith

    @Sniffit-"The right thing to do". Well, thats the problem with the world today. People have different ideas of what is "The right thing to do".

    June 24, 2014 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  18. Silence DoGood

    @Lynda/Minnesota
    "Silence, would you google Koch donations and charities please. You will find those numbers extraordinary"

    Surely you aren't suggesting we all follow merrily along off the cliff simply because these two men are ... well, charitable in their endowments? Come on, tom. Seriously?
    -------------
    I hear all the time about famous mafia bosses donating large sums to charity. So they are good to go then?
    False equivalence, sloppy logic, innuendo, rumors – all the quality conservative thought tools.

    June 24, 2014 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  19. Silence DoGood

    @smith
    @Silence-First, I don`t listen to Rush si I have no idea what he says. Second, Cows being worse for the enviroment than cars is a fact not a conspiracy theory. Third, you seem to think that the notion of death is a conspiracy theory or somebody getting cancer can always be prevented.
    1 – I stand corrected.
    2 – cows emit methane, cars make CO and CO2 – both contribute to global warming – you lost me
    3 – death and cancer – never mentioned those – I would prefer to stick with science – away from your dream

    June 24, 2014 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  20. The Real Tom Paine

    @ smith, the only way to find out if actions produce positive outcomes is to do something. Rigorous, continuous experimentation and questioning is what moves us forward, and you seem to be opposed to that. As for meaning less debate, we've all engaged in that, including you. That was my point, and you just proved it again. So-called pointless debates happen because some people refuse to accept the evidence in front of them, while others refuse it accept it because they fear what actions might bring. Who are you to declare what is meaningless? I may not agree with someone who as a Right-to-Life stand, but I won't shut down the debate after a reasonable interval.

    June 24, 2014 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  21. The Real Tom Paine

    @tom l, should we excuse the Kochs because of their other meaningful contributions? When what they do is inarguably affecting the quality of life for all of us, you're damn right I'm going to hold them responsible. Are they exploring alternative energy in any meaningful way, or are they just doing the same thing regardless of the evidence of their greed and short-sightedness? Are we supposed to give them a pass because of their other work? Come on, you seem to think they are so wonderful, and Tom Steyer is so evil, so please share your thoughts. Tell us what makes the Kochs better in your eyes.

    June 24, 2014 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  22. The Real Tom Paine

    Geez Gundy, what about your nanny? Anyone with lots of money, fits the bill. As for Harold Hill, fall in line with the rest of the sheep and get ready to be fleeced by the Tea Party Boys Band.

    June 24, 2014 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    "Funny how the Dems and the supine liberal media lapdogs are outraged over "Sinister Conservative Outside" money affecting campaigns but they think nothing of the same type of "Liberal Outside" money players being invited to the WHITE HOUSE to discuss strategy for the upcoming mid terms. "

    Do you not understand the difference between secret dark money organizations and their donors like the Kochs versus people like Steyer who do it all above-board?

    June 24, 2014 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  24. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Tell us what makes the Kochs better in your eyes
    -----------------------------------------------------
    Cue the Jeopardy music................here comes the buzzer.

    June 24, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  25. jboh

    I see Rick McDaniels & sniffit are out there trolling for the Koch roaches again.

    June 24, 2014 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
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