September 22, 2010

Roy Blunt: Flat Earther

Big Oil Blunt, who once said that there "isn’t any real science to say we are altering the climate path of the earth," makes a cameo in this video about Sarah Palin's "Flat Earther" friends running for U.S. Senate.

September 13, 2010

Blunt: "The Worst of Washington"

We'd like to give a shout out to Carmen Bumgarner from St. Louis for this excellent letter-to-the-editor in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. An excerpt:
I was not surprised to read that Blunt is raising more money than Carnahan. I mean he does have the big oil companies to fill his coffers. According to the The Center for Responsive Politics, Blunt has been one of the top recipients of oil and gas money in the last two cycles. We should particularly pay attention to his record as debate in Congress continues about cap and trade legislation. These oil companies haven't supported Blunt just because they think he's a nice guy -- they believe his votes and actions will line up with their interests, including any measures meant to reign in greenhouse gases.
Click here to read the full letter.

September 12, 2010

A Protégé of Tom DeLay with Connections to Lobbyists

On the heels of a recent profile from the Kansas City Star comes another look at Big Oil Blunt, this one courtesy of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. There are lots of fun facts about Blunt in this piece, but we'd like to highlight just this one.

From his earliest days in Washington, Blunt angled to join GOP leadership. He volunteered for tasks, almost becoming "a nuisance," as former Rep. Tom DeLay, of Texas, a House GOP power broker, once joked. Early in Blunt's second term, DeLay rewarded his eagerness, putting him on the whip team in charge of rounding up votes.

Blunt was known as DeLay's protégé, like-minded but smoother, and became the Texan's chief deputy. When DeLay advanced to House majority leader in 2003, Blunt inherited his whip position, No. 3 in the GOP hierarchy.

With his star affixed to DeLay's, Blunt, like DeLay, became known for connections with lobbyists. DeLay's departure from leadership under a cloud in 2005 left Blunt on two rungs of the GOP leadership ladder at once during the administration of President George W. Bush, acting as majority leader even as he retained his whip position.

Do Missourians really want a "protégé" of Tom DeLay who "became know for connections with lobbyists" to represent them in the U.S. Senate?

September 09, 2010

KC Star: Blunt "embraces role of the insider"

Last week, the Kansas City Star published a a profile of Roy Blunt. Here's just a few choice excerpts:
"Blunt was elected in 1996 and quickly became steeped in the culture of Capitol Hill."

"He developed strong ties to the lobbying industry."

"He has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from major corporations and trade groups..."

"Blunt has accepted contributions from disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff..."

"...his close association with DeLay and a cloud of GOP scandals would hinder Blunt’s rise in the House leadership..."
Click here to read the entire article.

August 24, 2010

The New Yorker Profiles Koch Brothers: Oil Conglomerates and Friends of Roy Blunt

This week's The New Yorker magazine features an in-depth look at two of Roy Blunt's greatest allies: brothers Charles (Chairman & CEO) and David Koch (Executive VP) of Koch Industries. According to Jane Mayer, author of the investigation, the Kochs are not only notable for running the second largest privately-held company in the United States. Since 2006, Koch Industries has led all other energy companies in political contributions.

And a hefty chunk of that has gone to Big Oil Blunt: in his 14 years in office, Koch Industries' political action committee has given Blunt $39,500 in campaign contributions.

The Kochs - operators of oil refineries in Alaska, Texas, and Minnesota and controllers of some four thousand miles of pipeline - are clearly dead-set on shaping an energy future that puts their interests over the public interest. Tax records indicate that since 1998, Koch Industries and a number of its affiliates have given more than $328 million to political and policy organizations, political campaigns, and lobbyists. Many of these recipients advocate for tax breaks for oil companies, making these investments almost a write-off for Koch Industries.

Unfortunately, that's only the tip of the iceberg. The article elaborates upon the Kochs' covert efforts to prevent environmental regulation and perpetuate our dependence on fossil fuels. They continue to spend millions to support highly influential academic institutions, think tanks and other oil industry-friendly front groups whose policies – shockingly – align with the Kochs' interests.

Americans for Prosperity, a Koch-founded advocacy group who has worked tirelessly kill comprehensive clean energy legislation and keep America addicted to oil, has announced that it will spend an additional forty-five million dollars before the midterm elections in November.

No telling how much of that will benefit Roy Blunt.

August 05, 2010

Roy Blunt: Right for Big Oil, Wrong for Missouri

July 23, 2010

...With a Little Help From His Friends

Reading this piece in today's St. Louis Post-Dispatch reminds us of the classic Beatles song "With a Little Help from My Friends":
When it comes to raising money, Roy Blunt is finding that oil companies and other corporate donors enjoy writing checks to groups of Republican Senate hopefuls.

[snip]

Blunt's backing from oil companies and energy interests has been a campaign trail topic in the aftermath of the BP oil disaster in the Gulf.

The reports show that oil, coal and other energy interests were among several dozen PACS that donated liberally to an entity called the Senators Classic Committee, which divided much of $664,000 in proceeds among Blunt and a dozen other Republican hopefuls and GOP senators running for re-election.

Contributors to the Republican committee included ExxonMobil, Chevron, Marathon Oil, Occidental Petroleum and Halliburton. Blunt enjoyed proceeds of slightly more than $30,000 from the joint effort...
Yes indeed. Big Oil Blunt gets by with a little help (more than $1 million...and counting) from his friends.

July 21, 2010

Big Oil Blunt, Meet Rubberstamp Roy

Though we've long since left the schoolyard, many lessons learned during our formative days remain salient. In this case, it's that age-old, insult-repelling rhyme: "I'm rubber, you're glue. Whatever you say, bounces off me and sticks to you."

This week Big Oil Blunt launched a new TV ad accusing Robin Carnahan of rubber-stamping the "liberal agenda." Let’s set aside the fact that comprehensive energy and climate legislation, which the Blunt ad falsely describes as a tax, would in fact create thousands of new jobs in Missouri while also curbing our dangerous dependence on oil and reducing harmful carbon pollution.

What's really amusing -- and has the added benefit of being true -- is that during his 14 years in Congress, Big Oil Blunt has consistently rubber-stamped Big Oil's agenda at the expense of transitioning to a cleaner, safer energy future.

In fact, the oil industry has given him perfect marks for rubber-stamping their legislative priorities in Congress (and, for his troubles, Big Oil and other energy interests have given him more than $1 million in campaign contributions).

The American Petroleum Institute, the main lobbying arm for the big oil companies, gave Big Oil Blunt a perfect 100% on its Voter Guide for the 110th Congress. Read about some of the big votes that Big Oil was saying "thank you" for here and more about Blunt's record here.

Hmmm..."Rubberstamp Roy." That just might stick.

June 25, 2010

Ethics-Challenged Big Oil Blunt Plans TWO Fundraisers With Ethics-Challenged Karl Rove

Politico reports that Big Oil Blunt will hold two high-dollar fundraisers with ethically-challenged former George W. Bush advisor Karl Rove on Monday.

The article describes the fundraisers as fancy affairs:
Rove is slated to host two events for the seven-term congressman: a breakfast in St. Charles and a luncheon in Springfield, the Blunt campaign confirmed to POLITICO.

Donors who buck up the maximum $2,400 contribution get a private roundtable with President Bush’s top political adviser, while supporters donating $1,000 will receive a photo opportunity with Rove. The event alone is $500 a head.
But for someone who's used to rubbing elbows with dirty energy lobbyists at Washington's most posh restaurants (to the tune of more than $1 million in campaign cash, no less), the Rove event would seem like the perfect next step for a career politician who has twice been named one of the "Most Corrupt Members of Congress."
Big Oil Blunt: offering Missourians the chance to relive the Karl Rove-style politics that defined George W. Bush's eight years in office, for the low price of $500 a head.

June 17, 2010

And coming in at #1...

The Associated Press is out with a fascinating look at how much members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee have received in campaign cash from oil and gas interests since January 2009.

Guess who tops the list with $133,100 in contributions from PACs run by oil and gas companies and from individuals employed by those companies?

None other than Big Oil Blunt.

June 14, 2010

A Match Made in Heaven: Big Oil Blunt and the Big Oil Bailout

Last Friday, it came as no surprise that Big Oil Blunt was disappointed when Sen. Murkowski's "Big Oil Bailout" resolution failed to pass in the Senate. The Murkowski Resolution, which would have dismantled or frozen the Clean Air Act, was just another bailout aimed at protecting Big Oil, corporate polluters and lobbyists. It would have put public health at risk, jeopardized long-overdue action to hold the biggest polluters accountable and kept America addicted to oil.

But Blunt has never been a fan of holding polluter's responsible for their actions and clearly puts special interests ahead of public interests. That's why he is a cosponsor of multiple pieces of companion legislation in the House (HJ Res. 77, HR 391).

However, it's never enough for him to just sponsor bills designed to protect special interests. In typical Big Oil Blunt fashion, he felt the need to tweet bad information for all the world to see.
@RoyBlunt - Washington Democrats this week supported a backdoor cap & tax scheme. Cap & tax will kill 32,000 jobs in Missouri in 1st year.
First of all, the Clean Air Act is not a "backdoor cap & tax scheme." It is a law passed by Congress decades ago that requires the EPA to protect the air our children breathe. Secondly, Blunt feels no need to cite a source for the 32,000 jobs in the first year statistic, which, by the way, is false. The comprehensive energy bill that Blunt voted against last year would actually help create new jobs in Missouri.

He also fails to mention that Missourians spend over $10 billion on oil each year, while the U.S. spends $1 billion a day on foreign oil. Blunt's buddies in the oil industry have been blocking energy reform for decades, but with oil spewing across the Gulf, it is now more clear than ever that our dependence on oil -- be it from hostile nations or friendly coasts -- hurts our economy, threatens our national security and harms our environment.

Sadly, instead of helping Missouri transition to a local sources of clean, secure energy, Big Oil Blunt is determined to continuing siding with the Big Oil companies that fund his campaigns.

June 03, 2010

Unbelievable: Big Oil Blunt Takes Halliburton Money While His Committee Investigates Halliburton/BP/ Transocean Oil Spill

Politico reported yesterday that Big Oil Blunt took a $1,000 campaign check from perennial bad actor Halliburton while his Congressional committee was investigating the massive oil spill in which Halliburton is involved:
As Congress investigated its role in the doomed Deep Horizon oil rig, Halliburton donated $17,000 to candidates running for federal office, giving money to several lawmakers on committees that have launched inquiries into the massive spill.

Halliburton’s political contributions in May are the highest they’ve been since September 2009, when the PAC also gave $17,000 in donations. In fact, the last time the company gave more than $17,000 in one month was when it donated $25,000 during the heat of the presidential campaign in September 2008.
Where does Big Oil Blunt factor into the equation?
In the House Reps. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), who serves on the Energy and Commerce Committee, Mike Coffman (R-Colo.), who serves on the Natural Resources Committee, Geoff Davis (R-Ky.) and Dave Camp (R-Mich.) all received $1,000 from the oil giant.
In fact, Blunt's committee held a hearing May 27th on the massive spill's causes and the response.

Conflict of interest much? Well, now that you mention it, yes: Big Oil Blunt has also taken $11,500 from the oil giant BP's federal PAC, which makes him one of the top ten Congressional recipients of dirty BP PAC money.

May 17, 2010

NEW POLL: Big Oil Blunt is the Least Popular Major GOP Senate Candidate

According to new polling data from Public Policy Polling, Big Oil Blunt has the worst favorability ratings of any major Republican Senate candidate this year. 41% of Missourians have an unfavorable impression of Big Oil Blunt, while only 25% view him favorably.

Maybe that's because he's so out of touch with Missourians on the issues that matter. As we've reported in this space, Big Oil Blunt is wearing his unpopular support for Big Oil over clean energy jobs for Missouri as a badge of honor: he's proud of his 100% rating on the Big Oil scorecard, and he's repeating phony attacks on clean energy that fact-checkers have called "FALSE" over and over again.

Worst of all, Big Oil Blunt doesn't even seem to know where his constituents stand on passing common-sense clean energy and climate legislation.

Two major polls show that voters support a comprehensive clean energy jobs bill like the American Clean Energy and Security Act, a piece of legislation (opposed by Blunt) that would help create more than 35,000 jobs statewide.

•A January 20th, 2010 poll of battleground states including Missouri showed that the public overwhelming supports a clean energy bill that caps carbon pollution: respondents supported by a 58 – 37 percent margin an energy bill that contains cap-and-trade. Independents supported cap-and-trade by a +11 point margin.

•A November, 2009 Pew poll also revealed Missouri's strong support for a comprehensive clean energy bill, with 67 percent of respondents in support of a bill that would require factories and power companies to reduce their emissions of the carbon pollution that causes global warming by 20% by the year 2020, and require power companies to generate 15% of their power from clean energy sources like wind and solar by the year 2025.

Missouri voters also overwhelmingly approved a Renewable Electricity Standard in 2008, indicating their strong support for policies that invest in clean energy, create new jobs and reduce pollution.

At least Big Oil Blunt is better at raising money than he is at representing his constituents -- he ranks among the top ten members of Congress in campaign contributions from the federal PAC connected to BP, the oil giant responsible for the disastrous spill that's currently threatening thousands of jobs and ecosystems in the Gulf of Mexico.

May 10, 2010

Big Oil Blunt's BP Money & Big Oil Record

We've pointed out before that Big Oil Blunt has taken more than $1 million from Big Oil and other energy interests over his entire career in Congress -- including $487,798 from the oil and gas industry alone.

But, as the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf Coast continues, it's worth pointing out that over the last decade Big Oil Blunt has been among the top ten congressional recipients of campaign cash from BP's PAC, having received $11,500 from the oil company's political action committee since the 2001-02 election cycle.

It's also not surprising that Big Oil Blunt has consistently supported efforts to expand offshore drilling, voting to do so in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Additionally, he voted against efforts to increase fuel efficiency standards in automobiles in 2001, 2003, 2005 and 2007. The 2007 vote, in which automobile mileage standards were raised to 35 miles per gallon, will reduce U.S. oil consumption by 1.2 million barrels of oil per day by 2020.

Need more on Big Oil Blunt's record? Click here.

April 15, 2010

Tax Day Edition: Big Oil Blunt Favors Oil Profits Over Clean Energy Jobs

On April 15th, we are all especially attentive to how our tax dollars are being spent. So here at Big Oil Blunt, we thought it fitting to point out today that Big Oil Blunt has consistently voted to continue billions in wasteful taxpayer-funded giveaways to oil companies.

Meanwhile, Blunt voted against three initiatives that would have taken away wasteful subsidies from Big Oil and turned them into job-creating clean energy tax breaks:
  • Oil Subsidies Repeal (Roll Call Vote 40, 1/18/07)
  • Clean Energy Tax Credits (Roll Call Vote 84, 2/27/2008)
  • Clean Energy Tax Credits (Roll Call Vote 344, 5/21/2008)
Investing in clean energy would create four times as many jobs as continuing wasteful oil subsidies. And the comprehensive clean energy bill Blunt voted against last year would help create 36,000 jobs in Missouri alone. But none of that matters to Big Oil Blunt, whose main concern is pleasing his oil industry pals.