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It's hard to be a corporate lobbyist these days

There are so few open doors and friendly shoulders


Congress is busy! As discussed in Monday’s newsletter, today is a big day for Biden nominees, in two different hearings this morning (links below).

Kate Aronoff does a much better job teeing up the hearing on Sarah Bloom Raskin’s nomination to the Federal Reserve, which began at 8:45 am, than I could:

This could all make for a contentious hearing, as mainly Republican senators attempt to paint their extractive-sector campaign donors—now raking in massive profits and engaging in tens of billions of dollars in stock buybacks—as the victims of woke ESG social justice warriors trying to cancel them with vaguely worded net-zero pledges.

In the same Banking Committee hearing, economists Lisa DeNell Cook and Philip Jefferson are being considered for the Fed Board of Governors. Jefferson, a professor at Swarthmore and former Federal Reserve economist, is an expert on the relations between monetary policy and poverty, and has done research on the effects of climate change in African economies. Cook, a professor at Michigan State, is an expert on international economics and the interaction of race and economics in the United States (a topic of a Financial Services hearing this morning as well). If confirmed, Cook will be the first Black woman on the Fed and Jefferson the fourth Black man.

On the floor, the House is taking up the America COMPETES Act1 (H.R. 4521), which includes the text of the CHIPS Act2, “a $52 billion subsidy program for private firms that build semiconductor production facilities in the United States,” and a Supply Chain Resilience Program with $45 billion over five years in subsidies for domestic manufacturing, and $8 billion in contributions to the Green Climate Fund, as well as immigration reforms and other provisions.3

Given the bill represents the intersection of corporate lobbying priorities and labor and national interests, it’s reasonable to expect it will pass the House and Senate in some form, though Republicans of course are working to kill off any of the Green-New-Deal-ish elements. They’ve filed dozens of amendments to dump the climate provisions4, while Democratic climate hawks have filed amendments to strengthen the legislation, notably:

  • 49 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.): Increases the Green Climate fund by $3 billion

  • 123 Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.): Establishes a Climate Change Education Program at NOAA

  • 450 Cori Bush (D-Mo.): Conducts a comprehensive assessment to measure the impact of oil spills and plastic ingestion on sea life

Let’s talk a little bit about how corporate criminals stay in power in Washington DC.

In this week’s Heated, Connor Gibson exposes further how Edelman, the PR giant which claimed in 2015 it would stop repping coal companies, are a bunch of lying liars. Since Edelman has taken over three million dollars to represent the coal-industry lobbying group National Mining Association, which runs ads like this:

Where “affordability” means “runaway global warming.’

Meanwhile, the policymakers in the Capital wake up to daily climate-politics newsletters that look like this:

Check out this week’s sponsor.

This week (and many others), the Politico Morning Energy newsletter is “presented” by the National Mining Association, and sprinkled with explicit ads from the NMA. But the effect is more pernicious than simply stuffing in professionally crafted propaganda into the newsfeed; the blatant sponsorship is a pointed reminder of who calls the shots in this town.

Olia is taken on a tour by her nanny on Wednesday in Chicago, Credit: Scott Olson/Getty

Boston is considering banning gas-powered lawn mowers and leaf blowers, which would be good, as Alex Kaufman calculates that “30 minutes of a gas-power leaf blower produce as much air pollution as driving a Ford F-150 from Texas to Alaska.”

The EPA is looking to put the kibosh on Trumpie Louis DeJoy’s plan to have the Postal Service buy thousands of 8.6-mpg gas-powered trucks. “Gov. Greg Abbott said he could not guarantee power would stay on throughout Texas this week, just two months after he promised the lights would stay on this winter.”

Hearings on the Hill:

Thank you for the subscribes. Please share the newsletter with friends and colleagues, I haven’t been getting any sweet coal-industry money lately, so it’s up to you. @climatebrad

1. “America Creating Opportunities for Manufacturing, Pre-Eminence in Technology, and Economic Strength.” Hey, you try to create a better backronym.

2. “Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors.”

3 .Yes, I’m linking to the American Action Forum summary, they’re a craptastic right-wing corporate group, but it’s a good write-up! That’s the real secret of good corporate lobbying—supply useful information most of the time, until policymakers are hooked.

4. Numbers 6, 13, 25, 26, 29, 37, 45, 51, 71, 100, 106, 120, 136, 144, 145, 162, 171, 176, 179, 190, 208, 210, 225, 227, 228, 265, 266, 268, 284, 287, 330, 342, 350, 498, 509, 520, 553, if you care.

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