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More green attack ads

By Juliet Eilperin

Are you tired of brutal attack ads launched by environmentalists at Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.)? If so, read about the ongoing saga concerning the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

But if not, you can watch this mocking online commercial from PolluterWatch, a Greenpeace project. Riffing off the eHarmony matchmaking site, it bills itself as "the #1 matchmaking site for polluters, industry lobbyists, & politicians!"

Green groups are targeting the two lawmakers because they've joined forces in seeking to block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emissions on the grounds that the discharges endanger public health and welfare.

PolluterHarmony.com features a corporate lobbyist named Jeff (a reference to Jeffrey R. Holmstead, a Bracewell & Guiliani lawyer who worked with Murkowski and her staff on a similar provision last fall) who says he's been matched with "Lisa." An extra personal touch: he flashes a photo of Murkowski holding up a massive fish she caught a few years ago in Alaska.

Murkowksi's spokesman Robert Dillon wasn't amused.

"This type of personal attack is highly offensive and clearly crosses the line," Dillon said. "This is a perfect example of what's wrong with Washington. Too often outside groups go for the personal attack when they can¹t win on the merits. Rather than have a legitimate debate about the policy, they launch a smear campaign. A couple weeks ago it was babies smoking cigarettes; now it¹s insults to the senator and her family as if these people have no bounds, no sense of truth, and no interest in meaningful climate policy. Greenpeace should be downright ashamed to be associated with, let alone paying for, these ads."

Meanwhile, Friends of the Earth and Credo Action are holding an online contest on what sort of a billboard they should post in Little Rock, Ark. to criticize Lincoln for her support of legislation blocking the EPA's authority to curb greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

"Senator Lincoln has blatantly ignored Arkansans' health and welfare in doing corporate polluters' bidding and trying to roll back the Clean Air Act," said Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica in a statement. "This billboard will help hold her accountable."

According to Friends of the Earth's spokesman Nick Berning, the ad's a bargain. "As for the money, it'll costs less than $5,000 to put this up for a month in one of the most highly trafficked spots in Little Rock," he wrote in an e-mail, adding that 20,000 people have already voted on a billboard design.

Lincoln spokeswoman Katie Laning Niebaum also wasn't thrilled.

"These intentionally deceptive ads lead people to believe that Senator Lincoln's efforts would interfere with the enforcement of the Clean Air Act, which is not accurate. The Murkowski Resolution maintains the Clean Air Act by preventing the EPA from moving forward with over-reaching regulations, beyond the intent of Congress, which could damage Arkansas's small business economy. Senator Lincoln is working for a 21st century energy policy that creates new jobs. She has built a practical, common-sense record on energy and environmental issues while working closely with Arkansas environmental advocates. Threats from extremist groups from outside the state tell us she's doing something right for Arkansas."

By

Juliet Eilperin

 |  February 11, 2010; 7:58 PM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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