America's Greenest Politicians
Next week, Newsweek will reveal its fourth annual Green Rankings. First, however, The Daily Beast is ranking the greenest legislators across America—to identify the ecofriendly politicians to parallel our ecofriendly companies.
To find the greenest members of Congress, we started with the most recent annual scoring of legislators’ environmental records from the League of Conservation Voters (LCV), homing in on the nearly 100 electeds who scored a 97 out of 100 or better. Then, because money makes the political world go ’round, we looked at donations from the oil, gas, and mining industries, to see if there were any so-called green politicians taking big dollars from potential polluters. To find out who was more likely to be beholden to environmental concerns, we also took into account donations from environmental policy and alternate energy interests, more likely to push for support for green legislation. These donation dollars were calculated as a percentage of each politician’s total donations over the most recent term-period (six years for senators, two years for representatives), with data from the Center for Responsive Politics and Maplight. Finally, we added bonus points for politicians who are members of environmental caucuses.
The Green Rankings were created in 2009 with ASAP Media, a New York City media development firm founded by editors Peter W. Bernstein ([email protected]) and Annalyn Swan ([email protected]). It specializes in creating magazine, book, and online content.