Of course they’re not anything of the kind in the clickbaity headline above. Greenpeace is an international environmental organization that is trying to keep our planet from boiling alive due to global warming. But they’re asking pointed questions that make Clinton uncomfortable, and somehow this is all Sanders’ fault. How? I have no idea. Somehow he’s become the enemy that’s blamed for pointed questions instead of her own record reflecting poorly on herself.
Here’s what happened: recently at a campaign stop a supporter of Greenpeace tried to get Democratic candidate for president Hillary Clinton to say if she’d stop taking campaign donations from oil industry lobbyists. She got very upset and snapped at her questioner.
From the research that Greenpeace has compiled on past donations and her record:
Hillary Clinton’s campaign has been backed by the fossil fuel industry in a number of ways.
First there are the direct contributions from people working for fossil fuel companies to Hillary Clinton’s campaign committee. According to the most recent filings, the committee has received $309,107 (as of 3/21/16; source: Center for Responsive Politics) from such donors
Next are the fossil fuel lobbyists, many of whom have also bundled contributions. These donations also flow to Hillary Clinton’s campaign committee. Greenpeace has tracked $1,259,280 in bundled and direct donations from lobbyists currently registered as lobbying for the fossil fuel industry. This number excludes donations from lobbyists who are employed directly by a fossil fuel companies, as those donations would have been included in the previous number.
Last are contributions from fossil fuel interests to Super PACs supporting Hillary Clinton. Greenpeace has found $3,250,000 in donations from large donors connected to the fossil fuel industry to Priorities Action USA, a Super PAC supporting Secretary Clinton’s campaign.
All told, the campaign to elect Hillary Clinton for president in 2016 has received more than $4.5 million from lobbyists, bundlers, and large donors connected the fossil fuel industry.
Here’s just some of what Greenpeace has to say about the kind of influence donations may have played in swaying past policy decisions Clinton weighed in on:
- 3 Enbridge lobbyists contributed to HRC’s campaign. While she was Secretary of State, Clinton signed off on the Enbridge pipeline (the alternative to KXL).
- Ben Klein (Heather Podesta and Associates) lobbied on behalf of Oxbow Carbon on petcoke and other issues. Petcoke is a byproduct of refining. Communities in Detroit and Chicago have complained about piles of petcoke blowing into the community. Bill Koch (the estranged brother of Charles and David) owns controlling interest of Oxbow. Klein also lobbied on restrictions of ivory imports for Oxbow.
- Fracking company and gas industry trade association lobbyists have also contributed to Clinton’s campaign, including Former Rep. Martin Frost (D-TX), who lobbied for the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance, and Martin Durbin of the American Natural Gas Association (now merged and part of the American Petroleum Institute – API), the nephew of Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL). Another donor is Elizabeth Gore, a lobbyist for WPX energy (fracking). A lobbyist for FTI Consulting, creator of an industry front group called Energy In Depth, also contributed to Clinton;s campaign. Although Clinton has said she would require FERC to consider climate change before granting any new gas pipeline permits, she recently told activists she would not ban fracking as president, and has a pro-fracking track record which has been well-documented by numerous groups, including pro-Clinton Super PAC Correct the Record.
I think it’s fair to ask her what her priorities are and who she’ll serve — the American people presumably concerned about planet earth, or her campaign donors?
This isn’t a rightwing group after all, that’s asking her for accountability. It’s not a tracker from the Sanders campaign. It’s someone from Greenpeace, a treehugging environmental group.
And it’s a series of questions she asked then-candidate Barack Obama in 2008 when they were both running for president. (In fact, both candidates accepted money bundled from people working in the oil industry, Clinton more so than Obama.)
Turnabout is fair play.
- Fossil Industry Fuels Presidential Super PAC Funding (thecontributor.com)