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Pollesch earns Sierra Club endorsement

Shari Pollesch earned the Sierra Club's endorsement in her campaign to unseat Joe Hune in the Michigan Senate., with permission.

Shari Pollesch gained another endorsement Monday as the Sierra Club included her in the latest batch of candidates it is recommending to voters. Pollesch is running for the Democratic nomination to challenge incumbent Republican Joe Hune, who represents western and northern Washtenaw County along with most of Livingston County in District 22 of the Michigan Senate.

Pollesch has served on the Michigan League of Conservation Voters Board, including two years as chair. She regularly participates in Sierra Club activities including Citizen Lobby Day, advocacy trips to Washington D.C., writing letters to newspapers, and fighting against fracking in Livingston County.

When asked about her endorsement on Tuesday, Pollesch told "if we make the planet uninhabitable, nothing else will really matter."

Others endorsed Monday included Bert Johnson, who is running for Michigan Senate District 2, and Bryan Mielke, who is running for Michigan State House in District 99.

Pollesch joins eight other candidates on the ballot in Washtenaw County this year who have been endorsed by the Sierra Club, all of whom are Democrats.

On the statewide ballot, the Sierra Club has endorsed Gary Peters for U.S. Senate and Mark Schauer for Governor. It has also endorsed Pam Byrnes, who is running to unseat Republican Tim Walberg in the Seventh District of the U.S. House of Representatives, which includes much of the same parts of Washtenaw County as Pollesch wants to serve.

The Sierra Club has also endorsed Rebekah Warren, who represents eastern Washtenaw County and easternmost Livingston County in District 18 of the Michigan Senate, in her bid for re-election. This means that the environmental advocacy organization has endorsed both of the Democratic candidates that cover Washtenaw County.

In addition to recommending candidates for both state senate seats in Washtenaw County, the environmental advocacy organization has also endorsed all four incumbents representing Washtenaw County in the Michigan House of Representatives. This includes Gretchen Driskell in District 52, Steve Irwin in District 53, David Rutledge in District 54, and Adam Zemke in District 55.

In a press release endorsing Pollesch, Johnson, and Mielke, Michigan Sierra Club Political and Legislative Director Mike Berkowitz said "These candidates have demonstrated strong support for clean air, clean water, and for strengthening Michigan's clean energy future. These are issues everyday Michiganders care about and should be priorities for the next legislature."

The Sierra Club also recommended yes votes on both of the ballot initiatives that would stop the wolf hunt in the Upper Peninsula.

In the same press release, Richard Morley Barron, Political Chair of the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter, said “Sierra Club is a grassroots organization and our strength is in educating and mobilizing environmental voters. Given the unprecedented challenges facing our Great Lakes, our climate and a weakening of pollution protection and enforcement, we are committed to implementing the most robust effort of any election year in our history. The times demand it and our members expect it.”

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