Mission Blue is proud to partner with Ocean Champions, #VoteTheOcean on November 8th!
Everyday we work to safeguard the health of our ocean and its wildlife – from sustainable fisheries and clean beaches to pods of dolphins and porpoises. We need members of Congress to make strong federal policies and laws that preserve our nation’s marine and coastal resources. At Ocean Champions, we work to get the right officials elected to Congress who will lead the charge to protect and manage the ocean. As we say at Ocean Champions: “Great ocean policies begin with great ocean champions.”
What We Do
During the past 10 years we’ve helped elect over 100 ocean champions in Congress — Republicans, Democrats, and Independents who have made the oceans a priority. As the only ocean conservation group engaging this way, Ocean Champions is committed to upping our electoral game with more endorsements, more contributions to candidates, and more impact with our independent messaging campaigns for candidates. We currently have 68 champions in the House and Senate. We are doing everything we can to get more ocean champions elected on November 8th.
At the Ocean Champions annual ocean reception on Capitol Hill this past September, we gathered to honor ocean champions in the House and Senate that work tirelessly to protect our oceans. Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii is one of those champions – for his leadership in expanding the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, designated by President Obama in August. The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is the largest marine protected area in the world, measuring 582,578 square miles (1.5 million square kilometers). Senator Schatz told the overflowing room, “Ocean Champions is a small but mighty group. To the extent that I had a role in the establishment of the Papahānaumokuākea – remember – Ocean Champions raised me significant money, and also remember, I won by 1,782 votes. Without Ocean Champions, I wouldn’t have been able to serve in the United States Senate and continue to be an ocean champion. Thank you so much for everything you do.”
How We Do It
With tomorrow being election day, we are primed to help elect over 50 ocean champions to Congress in races across the country, champions like Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii. We spend a great deal of time determining whom we endorse each election cycle. We take our endorsement process very seriously. In making endorsement decisions we consider a number of factors, including a candidate’s future leadership potential, campaign viability, past voting record on ocean issues, and a very important measure – potential committee assignments in Congress.
Our electoral engagement, combined with a pragmatic, politically savvy approach to legislative advocacy has earned us a strong reputation on Capitol Hill, and has translated into a growing list of successful policy victories. We were able to achieve our top legislative priority when our Congressional champions led and passed and President Obama signed the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxic Zone bill into law. Achieving our top legislative priority was born out of our commitment to a bipartisan, coalition-building approach to ocean legislation. We are also helping to make significant progress on deterring and eliminating illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing (aka “pirate fishing”), banning plastic microbeads, and shooting down harmful amendments. All these wins add up to better stewardship of our ocean.
Learn how Ocean Champions chooses candidates to endorse in the video below:
What You Can Do
Great ocean champions can’t happen by endorsements alone. We need voters like you to help get them elected. By building the number of ocean champions in Congress, we all will be more likely to enjoy healthy and productive oceans.