MERIDEN — An environmental advocacy group plans to spend $21,000 opposing state Sen. Len Suzio, calling his voting record “anti-environmental.”
The National League of Conservation Voters recently named Suzio, R-Meriden, to its “Dirty Dozen in the States,” a nationwide list of state political candidates that it claims are “some of the worst offenders in the nation when it comes to undermining protections for clean water, carbon emissions, public health, and more.”
The selection is based on a 2018 “environmental scorecard” grade given by the organization's Connecticut chapter.
“Suzio’s voting record sunk to a failing 46 percent in 2018 — the lowest score of any state senator,” the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters said in a press release. CLCV criticized Suzio for lobbying “hard against bans to toxic tire mulch in school playgrounds and carcinogenic flame retardants in children’s clothes.”
Suzio, who is seeking re-election in the 13th Senate District, responded in a statement saying the organization is “cherry picking (votes) to seriously mislead people about my pro-environment record.”
After Suzio earned a perfect score from the group in 2011 and 2012, the organization didn’t endorse him.
“They seem to be pushing an agenda other than the environment,” Suzio said. “Even after a perfect voting record, they didn't give me their endorsement.”
The National League of Conservation Voters has announced seven of its 12 selections for the “Dirty Dozen” list. Every other candidate named has also been a Republican.
Suzio also questioned the organization's integrity because he says it refuses to factor in his past perfect scores when calculating its “lifetime grade.”
“Would an honest organization promote a ‘lifetime’ scorecard, but deliberately exclude half of a legislator’s lifetime votes on legislation the League uses to compute the ‘lifetime’ scorecard?” Suzio said in the statement.
“Candidates who make Dirty Dozen in the States have a long record of siding with polluters over public health, and Senator Suzio is no exception,” said Pete Maysmith, CLCV Victory Fund senior vice president for campaigns.
CLCV endorsed Suzio’s opponent in the 13th Senate District, Democrat Mary Daugherty Abrams and said “defeating Suzio could flip the chamber to a pro-environment majority.” CLCV has endorsed 11 Democrats and two Republicans in Senate races. The Senate is now split 18-18 and both Republicans and Democrats see the 13th District as a key race for gaining a majority.
CLCV plans to spend $21,000 on advertising, part of CTLCV PAC’s $200,000 investment in statewide elections.