The Zombie XL staggers onward, prodded and pushed by the oil industry and conservative lawmakers—yesterday, 44 senators signed on to legislation that would approve the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. President Obama has twice declared that further environmental review needs to be carried out, and that the pipeline cannot move forward until then.
But that hasn't deterred oil executives, nor their beneficiaries in Congress. And beneficiaries they are: The Public Campaign Action Fund and 350.org dug up the record of the oil industry's campaign contributions, and, surprise! It has given tens of millions of dollars to the combined 44 senators now pushing its star project.
The oil industry donated$22.3 million in total to each of the Senators over the years, and the investment is evidently paying off. Here's the full list of campaign contributions to each of the 44 senators, which include 43 Republicans and 1 Democrat:
To those of you who still don't think that money pollutes the political process, take another look at that chart. As Bill McKibben tweeted earlier today, "1 Dem (Manchin, WVa) is backing keystone. and guess what? he got more oil money than any other dem. almost too easy". It's that simple: The more money oil donates to a senator's campaign, the more time oil industry lobbyists spend hovering around his office and taking him out to dinner, the more likely he'll be to vote their way when the opportunity arises.