The Christian Coalition of Michigan traveled to Capitol Hill this week for the Conservative Clean Energy Summit.
A poll taken among young conservatives attending says “72 percent favor encouraging the private sector to solve energy problems through innovation and technology while blocking any top-down, one-size-fits-all approach from the federal government.”
WGVU spoke with Keith den Hollander, chairman of the Christian Coalition of Michigan.
“I think there’s a lag in the realization on the part of Congress sometimes about how much conservatives are actually interested in this issue. We’ve got 10 U.S. senators and congressmen that will actually be speaking at the summit which is great and a lot of our attendees who are coming to the summit are out on Capitol Hill visiting their congressmen and their senators letting them know that this is something we care about, we’re really excited to be here and helping to educate them on the importance of staying informed on this discussion.”
WGVU asked how split are conservative Christians on this issue?
“You know we find that when people have all of the information and all of the facts they really aren’t split. There’s a very small segment that are so programmed to be anti-renewable energy for other reasons that they may never change that opinion regardless of how many facts or figures that you give to them. But for most people it’s really about education and that’s what the benefit of a grassroots organization like the Christian Coalition with millions of members nationwide we have the opportunity to share that grassroots message and give people that educated information that they need to be able to make smart decisions around this. The clean energy discussion, in particular, has been driven largely by one topic for too many years and that’s been the climate change discussion. And there are dozens of other reasons to be interested in renewable clean energy that have little or nothing to do with climate. And so, because climate has been such a polarizing subject for so many years I think that conservatives have largely stayed out of this space and I think to their detriment have neglected a very important issue for our national security, for keeping the cost of our energy low, for jobs and growth opportunities in our state, and I think it’s time for conservatives to really pick up that mantle and look at the national security and economic case that can be made for clean energy as well. And that’s what we’ve been doing as the Christian Coalition nationally for about the last eight years.”
Keith den Hollander is chairman of the Christian Coalition of Michigan.