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Corruption scandal escalating at the Clinton State Department
Emails uncovered by Friends of the Earth reveal State Department employees in a cozy relationship with Paul Elliot, a leader on Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign turned head lobbyist for Keystone XL – offering personal favors, praise, advice, and generally cheerleading the project while it was under review. Some of the messages are just damning. Here are some quotes:
“It’s precisely because you have connections that you’re sought after and hired,” offered as praise for Elliot’s work
This is showing like a brewing scandal that could harm the Obama team. The president needs to reject the pipeline to show that their approval was not 'bought'
The emails released today are a smoking gun that show how oil industry lobbying money has corrupted the State Department’s review of Keystone XL. They come out just after it was revealed that the State Department relied on a major TransCanada contractor to conduct its environmental review and public hearings on Keystone XL, and Wikileaks cables showed that other officials at the department gave the company tips on how to get the pipeline approved.
In a September 2010 email, Verloop celebrates after Elliott informs her that he's secured support for the pipeline project from Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.). "Go Paul!" she writes. "Baucus support holds clout." Other emails highlight a friendly relationship between the two, with Verloop asking Elliott when he planned to come up to Ottawa again. "When are you coming up to visit?" she wrote. "It's a snowy winter wonderland here this morning."
The Keystone XL pipeline decision is too important to be left to the oil industry lobbyists. As eminent climate scientist James Hansen has said : it is game over (pdf) for the climate if the XL Tar Sands Pipeline is built. President Obama campaigned on ending the crony culture in DC which allows for corporate lobbyists to dictate policy which affects the American people.
Ask President Obama to stand by his promise and reject the XL Tar Sands Pipeline here