Sierra Club Volunteers Mobilize for McAuliffe in Virginia

In just a few days, Virginians will go the polls to choose their next governor. But, for months, Sierra Club members and volunteers in the Commonwealth have been working hard to stop Republican candidate and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s extreme agenda in its tracks and ensure that Democrat Terry McAuliffe is victorious when the polls close on Election Day, Tuesday, November 5th.

The choice between the candidates could not be more clear. Cuccinelli has spent his time in office abusing his power and pushing an extreme agenda that is out of line with the rest of Virginia. His office used taxpayer dollars to help an out-of-state gas company bilk Virginia landowners — all while that same company pumped more than $140,000 into Cuccinelli’s campaign. He attacked a UVA professor conducting climate science research, wasting more than half a million in taxpayer dollars. And he stood with big polluters and extremists in launching attack after attack against clean air, clean water, and climate action.

McAuliffe, on the other hand, is a champion for clean energy solutions like offshore wind. He stands in support of commonsense safeguards to protect Virginia families and businesses from climate-disrupting carbon pollution. He knows embracing scientific research means creating jobs in Virginia. And he’s fighting to hold Cuccinelli accountable, becoming the first statewide candidate in the country to make his opponent’s climate denial a top priority.

That’s why Sierra Club volunteers and supporters have fanned out across the state, knocking on doors, running phone banks, and getting pledges from voters to stand against Cuccinelli’s extremism and stand with McAuliffe’s solutions. It’s also why the Sierra Club has invested more than $500,000 in voter education and get-out-the-vote efforts in Virginia, launching the website, running $150,000 in digital ads, and completing a direct mail campaign to 135,000 micro-targeted voters. The race in Virginia matters — its an opportunity to draw a line in the sand against climate deniers and show that when clean energy and climate are on the ballot, we won’t let the polluters or their allies win.

Lt. Gov. Candidate Ralph Northam (right) calls out Too Extreme Ken

Just last weekend, Sierra Club organizers knocked on hundreds of doors and made over 700 phone calls. All told, the Virginia Chapter has made nearly 7,000 phone calls in support of McAuliffe and recruited almost 300 volunteers.

In the meantime, the Sierra Club Student Coalition has deployed five full-time organizers to college campuses across Virginia, from the University of Richmond and William & Mary along with a focus on historically black colleges and universities like Hampton and Virginia State — and they’ve collected more than 3,000 pledges to vote from students while recruiting more than 400 volunteers to go to work to stop Cuccinelli. You can see some of them on the campaign’s photo petition here: check it out.

Virginia State University students with their pledge cards

Students filling out pledge cards at Hampton University

And we’re not done. The final days of the campaign are upon us — and Sierra Club organizers, staff, and volunteers are again ready to hit the streets this weekend to knock on doors, make phone calls, and get out the vote for McAuliffe. Its a race that’s too important to sit out – nothing less than a healthy future for Virginia families is on the line.

Paid for by the Virginia Chapter Sierra Club PAC.  Not authorized by a candidate.

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