Two environmental groups are throwing their support behind Democratic candidate Raquel Pacheco’s bid for the Senate District 36 seat in Miami-Dade County.
On Wednesday, Pacheco’s campaign announced that Florida Conservation Voters and the Florida chapter of the Sierra Club are backing her to win Nov. 8.
Florida’s environment is a major component of the state’s economy, attracting huge numbers of tourists while supporting the livelihoods of millions of residents.
“It is vital that we elect lawmakers who recognize this and are stewards of our state’s resources,”
Florida Conservation Voters Legislative and Political Director Jonathan Webber said in a statement. “As state Senator, we believe Raquel Pacheco will work efficiently to preserve Florida’s greatest treasure, its environment.”
Added Noel Cleland, co-Chair of the Sierra Club Miami Group, “We are confident Raquel will protect Miami-Dade’s natural resources from Virginia Key to Miami Beach and everything in between so that the next generation of Floridians can enjoy all our state has to offer.
Florida Conservation Voters formed in 2015 after voters approved the Florida Water and Land Conservation amendment to advance environmental policy and spread awareness. It is one of 29 state affiliates within the League of Conservation Voters.
The Florida chapter of the Sierra Club boasts more than 32,000 members.
Their endorsements of Pacheco join nods from other progressive groups including Ruth’s List Florida, Planned Parenthood PAC, Unite Here Local 355, Communications Workers of American, Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, Senate Victory.
Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book, Miami state Sen. Jason Pizzo, Miami-Dade Commissioner Eileen Higgins, former U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala and former Senate Democratic Leader Nan Rich are also backing Pacheco.
“I am deeply honored to receive support from the Florida Conservation Voters and the Florida chapter of the Sierra Club,” Pacheco said.
“Our state, and particularly Miami-Dade, are susceptible to sea level rise, flooding, and the damaging effects of climate change. As a local business owner and resident of Miami Beach, I know that the health of our natural environment means the success of our businesses, viability of our neighborhoods, and wellbeing of our communities. This November, Floridians will replace legislators who have snubbed the environmental challenges facing our state, with leaders who are ready to tackle the climate crisis. A sustainable future IS an economically prosperous one.”
A veteran and small business owner, Pacheco is challenging incumbent Republican state Sen. Ileana Garcia in SD 36, which encompasses a center-east portion of Miami-Dade, the lower half of Miami Beach, a large portion of Miami, including the barrier island of Virginia Key, and parts of the cities of Coral Gables and Sweetwater.
Early voting in Miami-Dade begins Oct. 24 and runs through Nov. 6.