Featured Profile: Gabriel Gomez
almost 3 years ago
ClimateEye editor Chelsea Henderson had the pleasure of talking to Gabriel Gomez,
a retired Navy SEAL who lives in the great state of Massachusetts and ran for Senate
against Sen. Ed Markey for the spot vacated by then Sen. John Kerry in 2013.
When did you first become aware of republicEn and our mission?
I had the pleasure of meeting Bob Inglis in Boston. His positioning on climate change science and solutions resonated with me as it reflects my own beliefs.
I'm what you could call a “green Republican." I support efforts to combat climate change and efforts to move the country toward using more renewable energy. I think we should help businesses move in a direction to adopt solar, wind, any kind of renewable energy, which lessens our dependence on fossil fuels and foreign oils. Fundamentally, I want to make sure we pass on to the next generation a cleaner and better planet than the one we inherited from the generations before us.
How do we appeal to the next generation?
This rising leadership generation is so aware of environmental issues, and they are politically active. We need to identify and groom younger leaders in the Republican Party and support them in efforts to make the environment one of their major party planks they run on. By doing this, we let today's kids see there are leaders in the party who think the way they do about the environment.
The environment is going to be one of the top two or three that people start voting on and until the Republican Party makes this a major issue, we aren't going to attract these voters. Doesn't mean we can't count on the older party leaders, but we need to make way for those who appeal to millennials.
In this current election, the millennials were all in for Bernie Sanders though. How do we strike that kind of chord?
We need to galvanize young Republicans on the environment like Bernie Sanders did on college education and other issues. Guys like Senators Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio who are younger and represent the future of the party at a national level are too far away from the environment, but if they moved to adopt a more ecoRight position, they could be an influence. It's that caliber of leader we need to bring over to our side.
It doesn't matter whether you identify as a Democrat or a Republican, we need to come together to find a climate solution that is good for the economy and good for the environment. It's a Venn diagram. We can do both. There is a sweet spot.
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