Climate Change Takes Center Stage at 5th District Debate

Oct 9, 2018

In this Monday, Sept. 17, 2018 file photo, floodwaters from Hurricane Florence surrounds homes in Dillon, S.C. Scientists say climate change likely boosted rainfall totals for both Florence and 2017's Harvey.
Credit AP Photo / Gerald Herbert

Following the United Nation’s recent report on climate change, the issue was a hot topic at a debate Monday night between the two candidates in Virginia’s 5th District.

Republican Denver Riggleman believes that people on both sides of the political spectrum need to come to terms with the fact that climate change is real.

However, he stresses that any efforts to combat a warming earth must be done in a way that does not eliminate jobs.

“And I would say that there has to be somebody who gets together, where we have some kind of non-partisan commission – not even bi – but non-partisan technical commission to look at a long-term plan to de-regulate to allow competition for green energies to go hand-in-hand with fossil fuels.”

His opponent, Democrat Leslie Cockburn, has major doubts that Riggleman would follow through on any climate control efforts should he follow through with plans to join the Freedom Caucus.

“The people he wants to join do not believe in climate change and I don’t think he is going to be able to be a free actor in some of those votes. I think the fact that this country is the only country in the world that has not signed the Paris accord is very, very worrying.”

The two candidates are hoping to fill the seat vacated by Republican Representative Tom Garrett, who announced earlier this year that he will not seek re-election.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association