Koch Brothers Recruit Hundreds of Republicans on Plan to Accelerate Climate Change

In what comes as absolutely no shock to me, it’s been revealed recently that since 2008, the Koch brothers have been pushing Republicans nationwide to sign an “anti-climate pledge.”  Which essentially means that whoever signs it promises to not back any piece of legislation that would combat climate change.

This isn’t shocking because many Republican members of Congress have already signed an anti-tax pledge to private citizen Grover Norquist.

I thought politicians were elected by the people, to do what’s best for Americans—not some private citizen or group who urges them to sign a pledge promising to do any number of things that just happen to benefit that person or group.

Yet, as of now, 411 current lawmakers nationwide have signed the pledge.  Those who’ve signed include Republican leadership in the House of Representatives, one-third of the entire House, and a quarter of all U.S. Senators.

How are Republican supporters not up in arms about this?  These GOP lawmakers aren’t even secretive about these things—they’re completely transparent in their behavior to support, or oppose, specific pieces of legislation based on these pledges.

While the Republican boogeyman is always out to build some conspiracy that everything Democrats and President Obama try to do has some devious ulterior motive, these Republicans openly pledge support to lobbyists or private citizens and base their ideology on these pledges.  Then they have the nerve to act as if their legislative decisions are based on “what’s best for Americans.”  Does anybody still believe that?

Yet the American voters who support these very same Republicans never seem to ask themselves, “Why is it what’s “best for Americans” (according to the GOP) always seems to coincide with what’s best for these private citizens/lobbyists for whom they’ve signed these pledges?”

Do you think it was just by chance the bill which would have expanded background checks on gun purchases (something supported by nearly 90% of Americans) died in the Senate?  Or was it because of some other pledge these Republican lawmakers have given to the NRA to oppose any and all attempts to regulate gun sales, no matter how common sense and non-intrusive they may be?

And of course there’s the Koch brothers, who would benefit greatly with far more lenient environmental laws.  They just happen to want these Republican policymakers to sign a pledge which targets legislation that would tighten environmental regulations—for the betterment of all Americans, right?  I’m sure there’s no link whatsoever to Republicans supporting anti-climate policies and the billionaire Koch brothers’ financial gains by Republicans opposing green initiative legislation.

Then there’s Grover Norquist, the radical who has been quoted as saying he wants to reduce government to such a size that you can fit it into the bathtub and drown it.  He considers Teddy Roosevelt a socialist, wishes to take us back to “where we came from” and cites a government prior to 1900—you know, back when women couldn’t vote, African Americans were segregated, working conditions were brutal and civil rights were openly mocked.

As of 2012, 95% of Republican members of Congress had signed his anti-tax pledge.

Which might explain why during the Republican Presidential primaries when these candidates were asked if they would support a measure that would increases taxes $1 for every $10 in spending cuts—every single candidate said they would oppose that proposal.

Are you kidding me?  A hypothetical 10 to 1 deal that would have cut spending $10 and raise taxes just $1 and even then these Republican idiots said they wouldn’t support it.

No matter which way you try and spin it, that is insane.

And it isn’t as if these GOP politicians hide this fact, they’ll openly admit pledging an allegiance to these groups/individuals—and Republican voters apparently seem to have no issues with them doing so.

It shocks me these people never say to themselves, “Hmm, it’s interesting that my party seems to always support every stance that coincides with these pledges that I’ve heard they’ve signed.”  They never say, “You know, it’s strange that these Koch brothers, who would benefit greatly by perpetuating the notion that climate change is a hoax, have spent millions upon millions to discredit science that says climate change is man made and impacting our environment.”

Because which sounds more plausible, the multi-billionaire Koch brothers have spent millions fighting the existence of climate change for:

  • The betterment of Americans, or
  • To increase their profit margin

The bottom line is, there’s something very wrong with elected public servants signing pledges to private citizens or groups.  These men and women were elected by the American people, not the Koch brothers, the NRA or Grover Norquist.

I just can’t believe Republican voters allow for this to happen with no repercussions.  Then again, you never see these things reported on Fox News, so most of them probably don’t know these pledges exist or have even heard of the Koch brothers.

And that’s part of the real problem.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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