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David Pringle

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David Pringle
Born1966 (age 54–55)
Cranford, New Jersey
🏳️ Nationality
🏫 EducationPrinceton University
💼 Occupation
Environmental activist, lobbyist
👔 EmployerCampaign director for Clean Water Action New Jersey
👩 Spouse(s)Laurie
🌐 Websitepringleforcongress.com

David Pringle (born 1966) is an environmental activist in New Jersey who serves as the campaign director for the state's chapter of Clean Water Action.[1]


Pringle was born in Cranford, New Jersey in 1966. His father, Malcolm Pringle, was mayor of Cranford from 1971-1972.[2]

He graduated from Princeton University in 1988 with a degree in wildlife biology.[2] Pringle served in New Jersey's Drinking Water Quality Institute, a unit of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, from 2002 to 2010.

Pringle met his future wife, Laurie, while organizing for environmental groups. The two married in 1992, and have three children. Pringle serves as a trustee of Cranford's First Presbyterian Church.[2]

Environmental and political activism[edit]

Pringle's early political activism was with the New Jersey Public Interest Research Group, registering voters during the U.S. presidential election of 1988. In 1992, he joined the state chapter of Clean Water Action, becoming campaign director and chief strategist in 1997.[2]

In his position with Clean Water Action, Pringle has been an outspoken environmental advocate, appearing on local affiliate television channels and authoring op-eds in local newspapers, often focusing on minor bureaucratic appointments, rules, and enforcement practices.[3][4]

In television appearances, Pringle touts Clean Water Action's scorecard evaluating how New Jersey legislators have performed on the environment, and often criticizing politicians, especially former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, for their environmental records.[5] Pringle's group initially supported Christie's campaign in 2009 for its highly environmentally progressive platform, but became increasingly critical of Christie as he broke a succession of promises to environmentalists while in office.[6]

In 2007, as campaign director for the New Jersey Environmental Federation[7] (which later became the state's chapter of Clean Water Action), which had endorsed Jon Corzine for governor in 2005, Pringle said "You keep waiting for something to happen, but it's the same thing all over."[8]

In 2016, he criticized the Christie administration for promoting a bill that Pringle said would weaken local newspapers, saying Christie was helping to undermine public faith in government.[9]

Pringle was critical of New Jersey's settlement with Exxon-Mobil for $225 million following decades of environmental complaints at their Bayonne and Linden, New Jersey Bayway Refinery plants.[10] He has said the deal was a ripoff to New Jersey taxpayers, calling it "the biggest corporate subsidy in state history," and said Christie had "abandoned his responsibility to protect the public trust."[11] He and other environmentalists advocated that it be overturned in favor of a much more robust settlement.[12]

Pringle has advocated for preserving the New York-New Jersey Highlands, citing studies that show development there could threaten endangered species as well as New Jersey's water supply. "Once you develop, you can't go back," he warned in an interview with the New York Times.[13]

Pringle led Clean Water Action's opposition to the PennEast Pipeline, declaring at a protest that "PennEast would destroy open space and property rights, pollute our water, and exacerbate the climate crisis," in Trenton in October 2016. He was joined by representatives of the Sierra Club, Environment New Jersey, and the Delaware Riverkeeper Network. Pringle was also critical of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for approving the pipeline, suggesting the agency was serving the partisan needs of the Republicans in control of the federal government instead of the American people.[14][15]

In December 2016, Pringle called for New Jersey to begin overhauling old pipes proven to be releasing lead into the drinking water of over 400 schools, once again criticizing the Christie administration for its handling of the issue.[16] He was an early advocate for new purifying methods to help remove cancer-causing PFOA and other toxins from New Jersey's water supply.[17]

In a 2017 dueling op-ed with New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin, a Christie appointee, Pringle criticized Martin for downplaying the severity of fecal matter found in the seawater at New Jersey beaches, calling Martin "false and irresponsible."[18]

New Jersey will receive $72 million from settlements related to the Volkswagen emissions scandal. Pringle has advocated that this money go to NJ Transit bus operations, green redevelopment of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and zero-emission vehicles.[19]

Pringle has called for immediate cleanup of the Newark Bay, a Superfund site, saying that "One blue crab in Newark Bay has enough dioxin to give somebody cancer."[20]

Working with New Jersey Assemblyman Tim Eustace (D-38), he has promoted legislation to make access to clean air and water an inalienable right under the Constitution of New Jersey.[21]

Pringle criticized the Delaware River Basin Commission for a lack of transparency while it was deciding whether or not to ban hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.[22]

Pringle was highly critical of proposed cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency budget in early 2017, which were projected to hit New Jersey especially hard. Calling the proposed budget "across-the-board devastating for the environment," Pringle also suggested it could "devastate" New Jersey's economy.[23] Pringle called on New Jersey's congressional delegation, both Democrats and Republicans, to oppose the cuts.[24] He has also called the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection "a shell of its former self."[25][26] In an October 2017 editorial in The Star-Ledger Pringle said the Trump administration's cuts to and inaction at the EPA would led to more pollution and less qualtiy in the New Jersey water.[27]

Pringle has called for morerobust funding for the Superfund program, criticizing New Jersey Congressman and House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen for not supporting it more. New Jersey has more superfund sites than any other U.S. state.[28]

Pringle has accused President Trump of diminishing public faith in government, suggesting he's "Making America Worse Again."[29]

Congressional campaign[edit]

He ran as a candidate for the Democratic nomination to represent New Jersey's 7th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives in the 2018 midterm elections, for a seat held by Republican Leonard Lance.[30][31][32] Pringle withdrew from the race in March, 2018.[33] Pringle announced on a Facebook page On December 28, 2017,[34]

Lance is among 23 House Republicans from districts that voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 US presidential election, and his seat is likely to be hotly contested.[35] [36] In mid-March 2018, the Cook Political Report changed their rating on the 7th congressional district from "leaning Republican" to "tossup."[37] Pringle has accused Lance of "enabling" President Donald Trump.[38] Pringle has said "the most important vote he took was for Paul Ryan as Speaker", since the House Speaker sets the agenda.[32][39]


  1. "Democratic field expands as party looks to oust Lance", Politico, 1/4/18
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Pringle for Congress". NJ Spotlight. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  4. "With Trump's toxic view of EPA expect sewage in your water", Pringle, David, NJ.com, 10/20/17
  5. Clean Water Action Campaign Manager: Political Will Needed to Move to a Green Economy (NJTV News, 2015)
  6. "Once best friends, N.J.'s top environmental leaders now fighting like bitter enemies". Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  7. "McGreevey Signs Environment Bill, but Environmentalists Stay Away". The New York Times. 11 August 2004. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
  8. Chen, David W. (September 29, 2007). "Patience With Corzine Wears Thin". The New York Times. Retrieved 10 February 2018.
  9. "Christie's newspaper 'revenge bill' moves forward", NJ.com, 12/18/16
  10. "N.J. judge approves controversial Christie, Exxon settlement", NJTV News, 8/15/15
  11. 1450 WCTC (13 July 2015). "David Pringle from Clean Water Action". Retrieved 9 February 2018 – via YouTube.
  12. Johnson, Tom (September 15, 2015). "Environmentalists Band Together to Overturn ExxonMobil Settlement". NJ Spotlight. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  13. Capuzzoaug, Jill P. (August 12, 2012). "Mapping Future Growth". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  15. [1], "Activists critical of federal hearing on PennEast pipeline," USA TODAY, 8/17/16
  16. David Pringle: "OP-ED: IT'S NOT JUST LEAD -- NEW JERSEY’S DRINKING-WATER CRISIS", NJ Spotlight, 12/26/16
  17. "NJ proposes stringent standard to control cancer-chemical in water", App (USA Today), 9/22/16
  18. David Pringle, Bob Martin: "Swallowing sewage? Experts take opposite sides | Feedback", NJ.com (Star-Ledger), 4/26/17
  19. "How will N.J. use millions from Volkswagen settlements?", Northjersey.com (USA Today), 5/1/17:
  20. "Outrage Over Company Backing Out of Superfund Cleanup Through Bankruptcy", NJTV News, 4/18/27 (video)
  21. Johnson, Tom (December 1, 2017). "Will New Jersey Make a Healthy Environment an Inalienable Right?". NJ Spotlight. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  22. Bucks County Courier Times, 12/13/17
  23. Johnson, Tom (September 5, 2017). "Trump's EPA Cuts Could Wreak Havoc with Delaware River Watershed". NJ Spotlight. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  24. "Cuts to EPA budget are attack on N.J., environmental groups say, NJ.com (Star-Ledger), 8/17/17
  25. "Federal aid cuts may hammer NJ’s environmental budget" NJ 101.5
  26. Contributor, Morristown Green. "Morristown Earth Day rally to press Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen to support EPA, April 22 - Morristown Green". morristowngreen.com. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  27. Pringle, David (October 20, 2017). "With Trump's toxic view of EPA expect sewage in your water | Opinion". The Star-Ledger. Retrieved 6 March 2018.
  28. "Byram Superfund tour group wants full, stable funding", New Jersey Herald, 9/13/17
  29. "Hillsborough Democrats Host Forum for 7th Congressional District Candidates", Tapinto, 1/5/18
  30. "NJ Politics Digest: No Task Force Report on Police, Fire Salary Cap", The Observer, 1/3/18
  31. CD7 Flashpoint: Enviro Leader Pringle Wants a 2018 Crack at Lance, InsiderNJ, 12/31/17
  32. 32.0 32.1 Alfaro, Alyana (January 2, 2018). "Pringle Joins Democrats Jockeying to Replace Lance in New Jersey's 7th District". The Observer. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  33. "Pringle Exits the CD7 Contest". Insider NJ. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  34. "David Pringle for Congress". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  35. "Barbra Streisand opposes Trump-friendly N.J. Republican & other campaign fun facts", NJ.com, 2/4/18
  36. WATCH: CD' Candidate David Pringle in Gear (Video) InsiderNJ, 1/8/18
  37. Leonard Lance no longer the odds-on favorite to keep his seat Nj.com, March 16th, 2018
  38. "Democratic field expands as party looks to oust Lance," Politico, 1/4/18 :https://www.politico.com/states/new-jersey/story/2018/01/04/democratic-field-expands-as-party-looks-to-oust-lance-167563
  39. "New Jersey's Self-Proclaimed Moderate Congressman Takes Heat From All Sides", NPR, 4/13/17

External links[edit]

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