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Trump now says he misspoke as he stood side by side with Putin. Also on the Wednesday rundown: a Senate committee looks to weaken the Endangered Species Act; and public input is being sought on Great Lakes restoration.

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From Zero to 100? Environmental Scorecard for OR Delegation

PHOTO: "Zero" or hero? Oregon 2nd Dist. Congressman Greg Walden scored a zero on the 2013 Nat'l. Environmental Scorecard, released this week by the League of Conservation Voters. It's a compilation of how members of Congress voted on a variety of public health and environmental legislation. Photo credit: Wikipedia.com.
PHOTO: "Zero" or hero? Oregon 2nd Dist. Congressman Greg Walden scored a zero on the 2013 Nat'l. Environmental Scorecard, released this week by the League of Conservation Voters. It's a compilation of how members of Congress voted on a variety of public health and environmental legislation. Photo credit: Wikipedia.com.
February 13, 2014

PORTLAND, Ore. - "Zero to 100" may sound like the performance of a sleek race car, but it's the range of scores for Oregon's congressional delegation from the League of Conservation Voters. Members of Congress were rated on their 2013 votes on bills connected to clean energy, wildlife issues and land conservation.

Oregon Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Suzanne Bonamici and Peter DeFazio all scored more than 90 percent, and Congressman Kurt Schrader scored 71 percent. However, Rep. Greg Walden scored zero.

Doug Moore, executive director of the Oregon League of Conservation Voters, said that runs counter to the views of many Oregonians, whom he describes as "deeply environmental."

"They care about the land, they care about the state, they care about its natural beauty, and they care about the legacy that we're leaving for our kids and grandkids," said Moore. "To see somebody get a 'zero percent' is really very disappointing, because that is not representing Oregonians."

In past years, Congressman Walden received higher scores - even 43 percent, in 2009 - but the legislation chosen for scoring this time was full of hot-button political issues. They included the Keystone X-L Pipeline, attempts to weaken the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and to roll back clean air or water regulations. The League of Conservation Voters is nonpartisan, but Moore said most of the votes were not.

"There's a dramatic divide between the parties right now, and that's frustrating to see," he said, "because the environment should not be a partisan issue."

Oregon Sens. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden both scored 100 percent on the National Environmental Scorecard. The average Senate score nationwide was 57 percent; the average House score 43 percent.

The scorecard has been compiled annually for more than 40 years. It can be viewed online at http://scorecard.lcv.org.

Chris Thomas, Public News Service - OR