Featured republicEn: Vernon Lindo

almost 3 years ago

Vernon Lindo hails from Florida and starts his freshman year of college at High Point University this fall, where he plans to study Economics and Political Science. He is voting in his first election this fall. He spoke on the phone with our content editor, Chelsea Henderson.

You might be our youngest republicEn! How did you find us?
Actually, I found republicEn.org on Facebook! I was surprised to discover an organized group of conservatives who support climate change action. I had been saying for a long time that conservatives should talk more about climate change solutions and be proactive on the environment in order to appeal to millennials.

Let's talk about that. You are a millennial, you are conservative, and you support climate change action.
I worked on my first campaign when I was 13 years old. Since then, I've been thinking of ways that Republicans can be more popular, especially with my age demographic. By embracing more green environmental policies, conservatives can build ranks of younger supporters. Let's be real. Climate change is a threat, and green policies can be good for the economy and achieve other conservative goals.

What can we do to reach more young conservatives like you?
I recommend republicEn.org talk to more College Republican groups and Young Americans for Liberty chapters. Speaking to those groups will give you an instant audience that is supportive of your mission, and also if college students see these groups embracing climate change positions, it will help them expand their ranks too. Sometimes Republicans drive away millennials with their social policy. We need to debate solutions over science. Present a plan that is based in conservative principles but addresses the issues we care about.

Talk a little about the climate impacts you see in your home state of Florida.
Florida is a great state to be proactive on climate change given our geography. We spend so much money per year on beach restoration and already are seeing the economic costs of rising sea levels. Our beaches, our economy depends on tourism. If climate change goes unabated, tourism levels will drop and cripple our economy. Other coastal states will suffer the same.

There was a recent battle in Florida to allow private citizens right to install solar. It's a big issue here. People are aware of the benefits of clean energy and that we need to take steps to address climate change, especially if the state and federal government isn't doing anything.

What are your career plans after college?
I want to work on public policy. I imagine myself going the think tank route. Think tanks set the direction of policy on Capitol Hill and have a good amount of influence.
Thank you, Vernon! Want to be our next featured republicEn? Let us know!