If you’re following political news, you’ve probably heard of the Squad, a group of four newly elected congresswomen advocating for progressive policies like the Green New Deal.

But have you heard of the New Democrat Coalition and its plans for dealing with climate change? In this episode of Political Climate, we hear from a lawmaker who is leading that charge.

Last year, Sean Casten ran one of the most overtly pro-climate-action campaigns of the 2018 midterms — and in a historically Republican district. In the end, Casten, a biochemical engineer and a clean energy entrepreneur, beat out six-term Republican Rep. Peter Roskam.

Rep. Casten’s race in Illinois' 6th District was identified as a key 2018 battleground that could have determined whether Democrats took control of the House. And it’s a moderate, suburban district that Democrats will want to keep in 2020.

As you’ll hear in this interview, Rep. Casten is intent on finding solutions to climate change and doesn’t shy away from getting wonky on topics like energy storage and attracting capital to the solar sector. But he also takes a critical stance toward some of the policies his fellow Democrats have put forward.

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Political Climate is produced in partnership with the USC Schwarzenegger Institute, and thanks to invaluable support from producer Victoria Simon.

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