Today marks the beginning of a new commitment to self-government by, of, and for all of our people, and I wholeheartedly congratulate President-elect Joe Biden on his inspiring and renewing electoral victory. Having served alongside Joe in the Capitol for 24 years, I know he will lead our nation forward with principle, compassion, and strong moral conviction.
“We are at a tipping point in the global fight to solve the climate crisis. President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris have an unprecedented opportunity to reassert American leadership on climate and seize upon the enormous benefits of a clean energy economy. In doing so, Joe Biden can help to heal the divisions in our country, greatly improve our health, and provide the presidential leadership we need to eradicate the virus, end the recession, and repair the deep, enduring wounds of structural and institutional racism and injustice.
“COVID-19 and the cascading social and economic crises it unleashed have revealed deep-seated inequality and injustices in American society that the majority of Americans in all groups have decided we can no longer ignore. It has also exposed how the fossil fuel economy has hurt the health and security of our people and our friends and neighbors.
“I strongly believe the last four years of grassroots action and activism, led by Americans of every age, race, class, and creed, have prepared us to meet this moment with the urgency and imagination it demands. In the last few months alone, millions of Americans have marched in the streets to demand action on the climate crisis, justice for all, and to declare unequivocally that Black Lives Matter. With care and kindness – and the fierce urgency of now – Americans have organized their communities to provide for their families, friends, neighbors and frontline workers. They then took the fight directly to the polls, and both our country and democracy itself are better for it.
“Now is the time to translate this momentum into a just and equitable recovery program centered on clean energy solutions. Now we must restore American leadership on the global stage and push the community of nations toward greater ambition on climate. We must protect frontline communities first and reenact safeguards from pollution for all Americans. With strong, committed leadership at every level of government and an engaged citizenry, I am more hopeful than ever that we can and will solve the climate crisis, and together, usher in a new era of prosperity and opportunity for all.”