Paris climate agreement: What Minnesota politicians said about Trump's decision

Minnesota Democrats have some strong feelings about the decision to leave the accord.
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President Donald Trump said he's pulling the United States out of the Paris Agreement.

The decision was quickly criticized by leaders around the world and in Minnesota, with many city and state elected officials pledging to continue their efforts to reduce the carbon emissions – whether the U.S. is part of the Paris agreement or not.

Here's what some of Minnesota's elected officials – the people you can vote in and out of office – had to say:

Gov. Mark Dayton (Democrat)

Dayton said President Trump's decision "is terrible for our state, nation, and world," adding the state will continue its own work to reduce harmful emissions.

"As damaging as this decision will be, it will not deter our efforts here in Minnesota. We will show the world what we can achieve by working together to conserve energy, to use cleaner and renewable energy, and to leave a livable planet to our children and grandchildren," he added.

U.S. Sen. Al Franken (Democrat)

Franken called the move "a catastrophic mistake that puts the short-sighted interests of his friends in the fossil fuel industry ahead of the safety and security of American people and the future of our planet." He also called on Trump to reverse his decision.

Franken was also on The Daily Show Thursday night to promote his new book. He spoke with Trevor Noah about the president's decision, and you can watch the clip ere.

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Democrat)

"Today's announcement that the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement is a big step backwards," Klobuchar said. She noted the U.S., Nicaragua and Syria will be the only there countries in the world to not take part.

U.S. Rep. Tim Walz (Democrat)

U.S. Rep. Tim Walz sent a series of tweets Thursday in response to the Paris Agreement decision, saying in part climate change is a threat to "our air, water, food and national security, but tackling it head on opens door to U.S. clean energy jobs."

He also said withdrawing from the Paris Agreement "weakens U.S. national security, food security, moral/global leadership – and lets down our kids."

U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis (Republican)

Lewis said protecting the environment, air and water is "a goal we all share." But he criticized the decision for the U.S. to enter the Paris climate agreement because it "entirely avoided the input of the American people."

"According to the separation of powers doctrine in our Constitution, treaties – especially ones that cost a trillion-dollars – must be ratified 'with the Consent of the Senate'. Unfortunately, President Obama ignored the legislative branch when he entered into the Paris Agreement," he said.

Future discussions about it "must respect our constitutional process," he added.

U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum (Democrat)

McCollum said the decision will make Trump "a pariah in the international community," while damaging America's "credibility."

“As our planet and humanity face the very real threat of climate change, this White House and the Republican Congress have isolated our nation by reneging on the Paris Agreement," she said.

U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison (Democrat)

"Pulling the United States out of this global agreement will undermine our position in one of the most important international efforts in human history, acting against the wishes of the majority of American people, environmental scientists, and the largest fossil fuel companies," Ellison said.

He also called on other nations to honor their commitment to the Paris Agreement.

U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan (Democrat)

“Addressing climate change is the great challenge of our time, and the president’s decision to withdraw United States from the Paris Accords is a momentous setback for the United States and for all of humankind," Nolan said, making the argument it hurts our economy and national security as well.

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman (Democrat)

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman, who is running for governor of Minnesota in 2018, said President Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement is "another example of the Trump administration choosing to ignore climate science in favor of cynical politics."

Coleman is among the 82 mayors across the U.S. who've pledged to "adopt, honor, and uphold the commitments to the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement." Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges also made that pledge.

Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges (Democrat)

"We should be outraged, but we are not helpless: in the time of Trump, it is up to progressive cities to lead on climate change," Hodges said, while touting Minneapolis' efforts to be more sustainable.

Duluth Mayor Emily Larson (Democrat)

Before Trump officially announced he was pulling the U.S. out of the agreement, she released a statement saying, in part: "In Duluth, we believe in science and we believe in investments that will improve our community for generations to come." Afterward she tweeted the city will continue pushing toward its energy goals.

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