ELECTION 2020: Biden Vows to Continue Fracking

In response to a claim by Trump, the Democratic presidential nominee assured a crowd in Pennsylvania that he will not do away with the practice.

 Joe Biden, now the Democratic nominee, addressing a rally in Clear Lake, Iowa, August, 2019. (Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0)

By Lisa Newcomb
Common Dreams

In response to claims from President Donald Trump that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden would ban fracking, the former vice president told voters in the swing state of Pennsylvania on Monday that he would not outlaw the practice — despite polling that shows the American public increasingly favors aggressive actions left out of Biden’s campaign proposals and the official party platform.

“I am not banning fracking,” Biden told a crowd. “Let me say that again. I am not banning fracking. No matter how many times Donald Trump lies about me.”

During a Democratic primary debate in March with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) — who vocally supports a nationwide fracking ban and has introduced legislation in the Senate that would halt the practice — Biden said there would be “no new fracking” if he was elected, but his campaign later clarified that this would not constitute a full-fledged ban.

Polling continues to show American voters are in fact in favor of more ambitious climate proposals including the Green New Deal.

A new survey from Climate Power 2020, the League of Conservation Voters, and Global Strategy Group last week suggested voter opinion in Pennsylvania — a state with large-scale fracking operations — regarding climate policy “boosts Joe Biden.”

“The research shows that not only are Pennsylvania voters supportive of climate action and additional regulations on hydraulic fracturing (‘fracking’), engaging in a debate around fracking and climate clearly helps Joe Biden, strengthening his favorability rating and increasing his lead over President Donald Trump in the state,” survey authors wrote, in a memo released Aug. 27.

Survey results indicated 83 percent of respondents believe climate change is a serious problem, and 73 percent said they support the government “taking bold action to combat climate change.” But with Biden’s noncommittal attitude toward fracking in particular, and with the Democratic Party’s refusal to commit to end fossil fuel subsidies, progressives and activists remain unconvinced.

Journalist Dave Levitan suggested an alternative to Biden’s Pennsylvania promise: “Another idea would be to ban fracking,” he tweeted.

 This article is from Common Dreams.

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5 comments for “ELECTION 2020: Biden Vows to Continue Fracking

  1. Richard Spencer
    September 2, 2020 at 15:53

    Chomsky said he would vote for a lamp post to get trump out—me too .

  2. Aaron
    September 2, 2020 at 13:33

    Imagine how corrupt and useless he will be when, on one hand he arrogantly boasts about believing in the science for Covid, but on an even more serious existential(a word he used himself) threat, anthropogenic climate change, he talks out of the other side of his mouth, and SUPPORTS FRACKING!! Anybody who knows anything about fracking, knows that it must be stopped in order to even begin to have a chance at addressing the accelerating crisis. We can debate the precise moment, but there is a TIPPING POINT for irreversible, runaway climate disaster, what part of that don’t people understand? We don’t have any more time to wait. The science is solid as a rock and indisputable. So if Covid doesn’t get us, climate change will with these kind of leaders.

  3. Daniel
    September 2, 2020 at 10:11

    It’s not that Biden/NY Times think that banning/stopping fracking will hurt him with voters…they think it’ll hurt him with donors. Surely they mixed up their private comments with public pronouncements here.
    On a serious note, I used to live in Pennsylvania and I shudder at the thought of what that beautiful state must look like now. A(nother) great share upon Obama.

  4. John R
    September 2, 2020 at 07:52

    We all know Trump is a disaster and needs to go. However, don’t even begin to fool yourself about what we get when the Democrats replace him = nada. I would love to have a worthy candidate that I could vote for in a presidential election but that is not going to happen again in my lifetime. The Democrats do not want anything or anyone that is even a tiny bit progressive.

  5. SRH
    September 2, 2020 at 03:25

    From here in the UK as a British socialist, it’s fascinating to see how adept Trump is at manipulating Biden into swinging even further to the right. Trump claims Biden would do x leftist policy; Biden responds by repudiating any such policy, out of fear of alienating racist/capitalist/Zionist potential voters. Biden’s cravenness to anyone on the Right is nauseating and effectively demolishes the case for supporting him put forward by Noam Chomsky and others. Biden doesn’t care what the Left wants. The DNC, like the Labour party, assumes the Left has nowhere else to go. As someone wrote recently, the Republicans run towards their base (racists, woman-haters, religious enthusiasts, tax-avoiders); the Dems run away from their own on case one or two Republicans are offended by the slightest whiff of socialism.

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