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October 26, 2010

A Vote for Boxer is a Vote for Energy Independence and Jobs

Listed in: Other Domestic Policy, Opinions

Originally published on The Huffington Post

By Marc R. Stanley, Chairman of the National Jewish Democratic Council

Jewish voters in California have a number of reasons to go to the polls November 2 to re-elect Senator Barbara Boxer. Among these is her leadership in bolstering U.S. energy independence and creating new job growth in the clean-tech energy sector for Californians.

The American Jewish Committee has identified energy independence as a priority in promising our children a future free from foreign dependence upon imported oil. Polls show that job creation is the number one priority of California voters. Since her election to Congress in 1982, Senator Boxer has been among the foremost leaders in championing U.S. energy independence and the creation of high-paying jobs for Californians.

California is already the national leader in generating electricity through renewable energy, reducing green house gas emissions, and creating clean energy jobs. As the first woman and the first American Jew to chair the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee, Senator Boxer introduced The Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act to cut carbon pollution, reduce our dependence upon imported fuels and stimulate the economy by creating millions of jobs in the clean energy sector. In a meeting with Los Angeles AJC leaders this past August, Senator Boxer was asked to continue to push for a strong energy policy and reaffirmed her commitment to do so.

Senator Boxer voted for the bi-partisan U.S. Israel Energy Cooperation Act, which, according to AJC Energy Independence Task Force Chairman Jack Halpern, “represents a crucial step for helping the United States and other industrialized nations reduce dependence on imported oil by working together with Israel’s brilliant scientists and engineers to help devise alternative energy technologies.”

As former chair of HP, Carly Fiorina oversaw the outsourcing of thousands of U.S. jobs overseas. Fiorina opposes AB 32, California’s landmark law to slow greenhouse gas emissions, calling it a “job killer.”

Fiorina is just wrong. In a study released this month, California-based Next 10 and Collaborative Economics Inc. found that manufacturing jobs in the state’s green sector grew by 19 percent between 1995 and 2008. The increase came at the same time that overall manufacturing jobs in California tumbled 9 percent.

Fiorina’s position aligns her with out of state oil interests spending millions in an attempt to undermine California’s climate change law. But clean energy jobs represent the future of California’s economy. Senator Boxer understands this, saying, “We know clean energy is the ticket to strong, stable economic growth—it’s right here in front of us, in the ingenuity of our workers and the vision of our entrepreneurs. We must seize this opportunity, or others will move ahead.”

Now is not a time to be complacent and let others steal what should be California’s. On Election Day, Jewish voters will have a choice. They should vote for Barbara Boxer, who promises to help end our dependence upon foreign oil imports, make California more energy independent and unleash a new wave of clean-tech job growth to power California’s economic recovery.