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News Brief: Boston climate protesters ask Baker ‘whose side are you on?’

Since the election, President-elect Trump has appointed climate deniers and friends of the fossil fuel industry to every single cabinet position pertaining to energy and environment.

Boston climate protesters ask Gov. Baker: ‘Whose side are you on?’

Boston — On Monday, Jan. 9, 250 people joined a rally on Boston Common organized by climate action group 350 Mass as part of a national DayAgainstDenial that called on U.S. senators to vote against the Trump cabinet picks deemed most dangerous to the earth’s climate future. Boston protesters thanked senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey for speaking out against President-elect Donald Trump‘s climate-denying cabinet picks and called on Gov. Charlie Baker to do the same. Protesters highlighted Baker’s silence on Trump and his cabinet picks by chanting “Hey Charlie Baker, whose side are you on?” In a skit, a 9-foot tall Charlie Baker puppet was asked his opinion about Trump’s climate plans and cabinet choices, to which the giant puppet repeatedly shrugged.

Emcee and 350 Mass volunteer Steve Miller interviews a shrugging, 9-foot-tall Charlie Baker puppet about Baker's plans for meeting Massachusetts' Global Warming Solutions Act requirements.
Emcee and 350 Mass volunteer Steve Miller interviews a shrugging, 9-foot-tall Charlie Baker puppet about Baker’s plans for meeting Massachusetts’ Global Warming Solutions Act requirements.

In addition to addressing Governor Baker, protesters called on Markey to use his position on the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations to probe Rex Tillerson’s connection with ExxonMobil‘s alleged history of withholding information about the danger of climate change from the American public, which Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is currently investigating.

During his campaign, Trump repeatedly claimed he would “drain the swamp” of Washington, D.C. Since the election, however, Trump has appointed climate deniers and friends of the fossil fuel industry to every single cabinet position pertaining to energy and environment.

While Markey and Warren have already taken strong, principled stances against Trump’s appointees, Baker has remained silent, even commenting that there is too much “pre-judging” of Trump’s cabinet occurring.

In a coastal state uniquely threatened by sea level rise, larger storms and droughts fueled by climate change, Governor Baker’s silence is especially disconcerting. The rally’s emcee Steve Miller took advantage of the freezing temperatures to remind the crowd that “climate instability involves a lot more than just global warming.”

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