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‘We’re Working Harder’: Fact-Checking Trump’s Event on His Environmental Record

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President Donald Trump speaks about his administration’s environmental policies at the White House on July 8th, 2019.

On Monday, President Donald Trump held an event touting his administration’s environmental record. “We’re working harder than many previous administrations,” Trump said from the White House. “Maybe all of them.”

The event included speeches by multiple cabinet members and supporters including Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler (a former coal lobbyist), Secretary of Energy Rick Perry (who has close ties to the Texas oil industry), and a Florida businessman who ended his comments by saying “Trump 2020.” Most of the event’s speakers focused on the United States’ clean air and water, the EPA’s Superfund program, and American leadership in oil and gas production and emissions reductions.

Given Trump‘s record of rolling back environmental regulations and scrubbing any mention of climate change from governmental documents and events, it’s unclear why the president would choose to speak about his environmental credentials. Even some within the administration were surprised by the decision. “I don’t know why we’d spend any time talking about their [Democrats‘] issue,” one senior administration official told Axios.

As polling increasingly shows that Americans are more worried about climate change than ever, and nearly two-thirds believe that the government should be doing more for the environment, Monday’s environmental event may signal that the White House does not plan to cede environmental issues to the Democrats in the 2020 election just yet.

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