In his weekly radio and Internet address this past Saturday, President Barack Obama predicted that his agenda would draw attack from “special interests and lobbyists” on several fronts. If by “attack” he meant “support” than Obama is 100% correct. The Center for Public Integrity released a study last week reporting that hundreds of companies are trying to influence who will be the winners and losers under President Obama’s promised cap and trade carbon plans. According to the report:
more than 770 companies and interest groups hired an estimated 2,340 lobbyists to influence federal policy on climate change in the past year, as the issue gathered momentum and came to a vote on Capitol Hill. That’s an increase of more than 300 percent in the number of lobbyists on climate change in just five years, and means that Washington can now boast more than four climate lobbyists for every member of Congress.
Enron became one of the biggest corporate boosters of the Kyoto global warming treaty, which would require huge reductions in energy use by consumers and industry. According to an internal Enron memo, quoted by The Washington Post, the Kyoto treaty would “do more to promote Enron’s business than almost any other regulatory initiative outside of restructuring the energy and natural gas industries in Europe and the United States.”
In addition to all its political lobbying and contributions, Enron became a founding member of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change’s Business Environmental Leadership Council, a leading industry front group pushing the Kyoto agenda. Enron chairman Ken Lay also served on the board of the Heinz Center for Science, Economics, and the Environment, along with Fred Krupp of Environmental Defense, and former Alcoa CEO and current Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill.
So when President Obama announces that a bevy of corporate interests support his climate cap and trade plan later this year, remember whose interests he is really supporting.