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Murkowski and the lobbyists, cont.

By Juliet Eilperin

Post Carbon's revelation Monday that two lobbyists helped craft language for an amendment that Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) planned to offer last fall has already sparked a call for an Senate ethics investigation.

Murkowski's spokesman Robert Dillon dismissed the request as "totally bogus."

Kert Davies, director of Greenpeace's PolluterWatch, said in an interview he will ask the Senate Ethics Committee to investigate who asked Jeffrey R. Holmstead--who heads the Environmental Strategies Group at Bracewell & Guiliani--and Roger R. Martella Jr., a partner at Sidley Austin LLP, to advise Murkowski on an amendment that would have barred the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating carbon dioxide as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act.

"We will request the Senate Ethics Committee review in this tryst between dirty coal and Senator Murkowski," Davies said.

Dillon said the senator reached out to a range of individuals and institutions for input, including the EPA and Senate Republicans and Democrats, in order to make sure her amendment would achieve its policy goals.

"There is nothing improper with asking outside experts to review language written by the senator's staff, and the senator, to make sure it had no unintended consequences. That's responsible legislating," he said, adding that when she reached out the EPA, "EPA ignored us." (To see a letter from Murkowski on that front, click here.)

Dillon noted Murkowski alluded to the fact that she reached out to folks such as Holmstead and Martella in a Senate floor speech at the time, saying, "Some of our Nation's leading Clean Air Act attorneys--among the best and brightest legal minds--have assisted us in its preparation. They agree it will do exactly as it says, and that leaves very little ground for the claims that have been made against it."


Juliet Eilperin

 |  January 11, 2010; 6:37 PM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Please report offensive comments below.

Lobbyists for polluting companies described as "Some of our nation's leading Clean Air Act attorneys" says it all. Clean Air Act attorneys indeed. They should be described as "poisonous air defenders."

Posted by: lowercaselarry | January 11, 2010 8:19 PM
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Is their anyone on either side of the aisle who do not have the stink of corruption on them?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Posted by: scon101 | January 11, 2010 7:40 PM
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