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June 27, 2019

To My Fellow Candidates,

Millions of Democrats have made it clear: Climate change is the largest existential threat of
our time, and it requires more than candidates’ one-minute bumper sticker lines. At last
night’s first debate, the DNC and its media partners had the opportunity to show that they
were listening and willing to help educate voters about our candidates’ views and policy
plans on climate change. They failed.

The DNC had promised to discuss climate change “early and often.” That did not happen.
The climate crisis received only eight minutes of attention out of a two-hour debate, and
was not brought up as a question until 80 minutes into the debate.

Wednesday night’s debate proved why we need a full-scale climate debate to discuss the
existential issue of our time. I’m a proud Democrat, and our party understands the need for
immediate solutions to defeat climate change. We must send a clear message that the
Democratic Party is ready to lead on climate change – and there is no better way to send
that message than to have a full, televised climate debate.

Science demands bold plans and real solutions, and more than 8 minutes in a Miami debate
hall that will be underwater if we don’t act. We need a climate debate. The majority of us
have joined the call for a climate debate - a call led by the progressive grassroots, and
bolstered by over 50 DNC voting members. Democrats want a full discussion on climate
change. It’s past time for the DNC to listen.

Today, I urge all of you to join me in demanding the DNC allow a climate debate, and
eliminate its gag rule that punishes candidates for participating in an outside climate
debate.

The DNC continues to falsely consider climate change a single issue among many. The fact
is, climate change is at the core of every issue on the Democratic platform. A
comprehensive climate debate will highlight candidates’ plans to create good-paying, union
jobs; their plans to protect and empower frontline communities disproportionately
affected by climate change and pollution, and communities of color who are often hit first
and worst; their plans to address public health concerns caused by our warming climate;
and their plans for a national security strategy in an increasingly unstable world, as
drought and famine expand around the globe.

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We are at a tipping point. And it is up to our party to ensure that the next president takes
bold climate action on the scope and scale necessary to meet the defining challenge of our
time. Join me.

Sincerely,
Governor Jay Inslee