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Mitch Perry Report for 7.28.15 — Hillary Clinton goes green

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

It hasn’t been a great week for Hillary Clinton. Forget all the hullabaloo regarding the emails that she brought forward that have been found by the Inspector General to be classified, though she earlier claimed none were. That will or won’t be sorted out in due time. More troublesome are some of the numbers coming in from the NBC News/Marist Poll released on Sunday, specifically of her numbers in Iowa and New Hampshire. Her net favorability — those who view her positively minus those who don’t — was negative-23 and negative-20, respectively.

But while the mainstream media somewhat understandably focuses on these problems, which really could drag her down as a general election candidate next year, it’s time to acknowledge that she’s been laying down some pretty specific ideas on the campaign trail, and yesterday was another example of that.

That’s where she appeared to take the challenge we reported on last week by Tom Steyer’s NextGen Climate group, announcing that she will set a goal to produce 33 percent of the nation’s electricity from renewable sources by 2027, up from 7 percent today — a higher goal than the 20 percent that President Obama has called for by 2030. She also called for installing a half-billion solar panels by 2020, and to generate enough energy from carbon-free sources within 10 years of her inauguration to power every home in the country.

NextGen Climate announced last week that all candidates or lawmakers should strive by 2030 to have 50 percent of all U.S. energy sources come from alternative sources such as wind, solar, and move away from coal and natural gas, which together comprise 66 percent of the country’s energy portfolio. Nuclear represents another 20 percent.

And did we mention that Steyer is willing to give millions to candidates who buy into his plan?

Martin O’Malley apparently has already endorsed the goals that Steyer aims for, and the Clinton folks now believe she does, too. Just check out this paragraph in a New York Times story today:

“Although Mrs. Clinton has emphasized fighting global warming as a priority in earlier speeches, the role of a single large donor, Mr. Steyer, in apparently influencing the details of her proposal was suggested by her press secretary, Brian Fallon. On Twitter he said, “Counting nuclear, as Steyer does, she exceeds his 50 percent goal” for 2030.

Cynics can make of that what they will. The point is if you really care about climate change, is that this argument is only happening on one side of the aisle during this presidential campaign season.

In other news..

Jeb Bush was in Central Florida yesterday. This reporter caught up with him in the middle of his three-city tour, where he talked up how much he loves Pope Francis and how he believes he could even have a civilized conversation with Nancy Pelosi, a woman who he admitted he doubts he has anything in common with.

Meanwhile, the Bush campaign is feeling a bit more bullish about their chances in Iowa.

The 50th anniversary of the birth of Medicare and Medicaid takes place this week, and Kathy Castor went to a senior center to mark the occasion on Monday.

Meanwhile, Castor says she’s cautiously optimistic about a conference committee salvaging a Senate committee’s passage of a bill that expands travel for Americans going to Cuba.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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