Enviros appear to have won two key contests on Tuesday -- a high-profile governor's race in Virginia and a low-profile county council race in rural Washington -- and they did it by outspending their fossil-fuel opponents. Billionaire green activist Tom Steyer can claim much of the credit.
Through his NextGen Climate Action PAC, Steyer poured more than $2 million into electing Democrat Terry McAuliffe as governor of Virginia -- or, more to the point, defeating Republican climate denier Ken Cuccinelli. The Virginia League of Conservation Voters and the national League of Conservation Voters pitched in almost $2 million too, and the Sierra Club contributed nearly half a million. All in all, environmentalists donated more to the McAuliffe effort than any other interest group save for the Democratic Governors Association, reports The Huffington Post.
Virginia's lax campaign-finance rules worked to the benefit of Democrats and greens this time around, according to Politico: