New York Times: Coal Industry Increases Spending to Sway Next Congress

Written by admin on October 29th, 2010

The new York Times reports on the coal industries increased lobbying and campaign contributions during the current campaign.

NY Times

Among the largest recipients of coal money are Republican and Democratic members who have sponsored or voted for measures to block new E.P.A. regulations on global warming pollution from the burning of coal and oil and who are most likely to support efforts to block other new rules.

These members include Representatives Roy Blunt of Missouri and Joe L. Barton of Texas, both Republicans, and Nick J. Rahall II of West Virginia and Rick Boucher of Virginia, both Democrats. Each had received more than $25,000 in contributions as of early October, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan group that tracks campaign spending.

Two Senate candidates, Rob Portman, Republican of Ohio, and Gov. Joe Manchin III, Democrat of West Virginia, have also received sizable industry donations.

The political action committee of Representative John A. Boehner of Ohio, who is in line to become speaker if Republicans capture the House, has received more than $300,000 from mining interests, most of it from coal companies. The industry is counting on Mr. Boehner to reverse the current Democratic leadership’s refusal to allow a vote on the measure blocking E.P.A. carbon regulation.

As of the beginning of October, coal mining companies had collectively contributed nearly $3 million to federal candidates, with three-quarters of the money going to Republicans, according to the campaign finance group. The companies spent about $3.5 million to influence the 2008 elections and it appears likely that they will surpass that figure this year.


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