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Area pastor, Racine state Rep. invited to White House to celebrate signing of Inflation Reduction Act

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Jonathan Barker

The Rev. Jonathan Barker stands on the lawn of the White House during Tuesday’s celebration. Barker was invited to the White House in August to celebrate the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act.

A Kenosha pastor and Racine’s state representative were invited to the White House this week to celebrate the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act, which includes legislation some herald as a turning point for U.S. policy on climate change, joining thousands on the South Lawn Tuesday afternoon.

The Rev. Jonathan Barker, who had just recently been in Washington D.C. along with several other protestors calling for action to combat climate change, said he received the invitation in August, much to his surprise.

“I thought it was spam at first,” Barker said, laughing. “Then I read it, and I thought ‘wow, this is real.’”

Barker expressed his excitement about the impact the legislation would have, especially when it came to climate action. Barker said he’s always preached about making a “livable future” for the next generation.

“There’s been people throughout Kenosha praying for our leaders to take action, this feels like such an answer to those prayers,” Barker said.

At the event, Barker said he met many national community and faith leaders, and listened to speakers including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Vice President Kamala Harris and President Joe Biden.

“I just feel so humbled to be here on this day, celebrating one of the most important pieces of legislation in our country’s history to start combating climate change,” Barker said shortly after the event.

Prior to his departure, Barker’s congregation took every banner and poster from years of climate protests and hung them throughout Grace Lutheran Church to celebrate the passing of the legislation and as a sendoff for Barker.

“I’m just humbled by it, by the community, and I’m thrilled beyond words,” Barker said.

Via @gretaneubauer on Twitter

Wisconsin Assembly Minority Leader Greta Neubauer, D-Racine, smiles in a selfie outside the U.S. Capitol building.

Neubauer

Wisconsin Assembly Minority Leader Greta Neubauer, D-Racine, tweeted on her birthday, Tuesday, Sept. 13 “Thanks for the birthday wishes, everyone! Early morning cake on the way to the airport and made it to D.C. for the signing of the #InflationReductionAct this afternoon! A pretty great day.” followed by two photos of her birthday cake and a selfie outside the Capitol building.

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