10.31.18

New Democratic Report Details Industry Influence Over Natural Resources Committee Republicans Throughout 115th Congress

Washington, D.C. – Ranking Member Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and the minority staff of the House Natural Resources Committee released a new report this morning, Unmasked: How The House Natural Resources Committee Tricks Taxpayers and Treats Industry, detailing Committee Republicans’ campaign to stack full Committee and subcommittee hearings with industry interests in the 115th Congress. The report shows the many ways in which industry perspectives have heavily skewed the Committee’s policymaking and oversight priorities over the past two years.

The report is available at http://naturalresources.house.gov/unmasked-how-republicans-trick-taxpayers-and-treat-industry.

Key findings include:

  • Nearly 1/3 of witnesses invited by Republicans were industry representatives, far more than any other sector.
  • Republicans’ industry witnesses overwhelmingly represented fossil fuels – including oil, gas, and coal.
  • Republicans relied on think tanks rather than universities for issue expertise.

“Industries whose revenue depends on degrading our public lands should not be this Committee’s or this Congress’ primary source of policy information,” Grijalva said today. “The numbers don’t lie: Stacking hearings with industry spokespeople is a key piece of the Republican effort to help dirty fossil fuel executives line their own pockets at the expense of our public lands and waters. A Democratic majority would prioritize independent experts with sustainable, science-based, innovative policy ideas, not purely profit-driven or self-serving industry recommendations.” 

The majority party on a Committee has the authority to invite most hearing witnesses, and witness affiliations are a strong indicator of who the majority puts first in its decision-making.

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