Inslee urges 2020 rivals to join push for debate focused on climate change

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D), a 2020 presidential candidate, is urging his rivals for the Democratic nomination to join his calls for a debate focused exclusively on climate change.

Inslee has focused his campaign on climate change and has called on the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to schedule a debate on the issue. In a blog post on Monday he sought to enlist the help of other 2020 Democratic candidates.

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“That’s why today — on Earth Day — I’m calling on you all to join me in requesting that the DNC host an entire debate on climate change,” Inslee wrote in the post, addressed to his fellow Democratic candidates. “We have barely a decade to defeat climate change. And whether we shrink to this challenge, or rise to it, is the central question of our time — and it deserves a full DNC debate.”

He added that climate change is an “urgent problem” and can’t be solved “with soundbites and one-off questions.” Inslee said that in the 2016 debate, “just 5 minutes and 27 seconds were devoted to discussing climate change.”

“Many of you have stressed the importance of climate change in your campaigns. That is good — but we need to do more as Democrats. Let’s ensure that we have a robust debate on the massive national mobilization we need to take to decarbonize our economy, starting right now,” Inslee wrote. 

Inslee, earlier this month, first called on the DNC to hold a debate centered around climate change.

“Climate change is the biggest threat facing our nation. And it demands to be the sole focus of a nationally televised debate. Democrats must put this issue front and center,” he said in a statement at the time.

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