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Congressman Sam Graves Earns Dubious Distinction as Member of 2008 Dirty Dozen

Contact: Joshua McNeil, (202) 785-8683 or August 12, 2008  

The League of Conservation Voters (LCV), which works to turn environmental values into national priorities, today added Congressman Sam Graves (MO-6) to its 2008 “Dirty Dozen” list.*  Graves has earned an abysmal lifetime LCV score of only 4%** on energy and environmental issues.  He has accepted $63,983 from the oil & gas industry.
“While the people of Missouri are paying record prices at the pump, the oil companies are handing that money right back to Sam Graves,” LCV Senior Vice President Tony Massaro said.  “Is it any wonder that he keeps voting to give those same oil companies billions of our tax dollars?  Thanks to Sam Graves, we’re paying Exxon twice for the same gas – once at the pump and again with the tax dollars that could be going to schools, to veterans, or to developing new sources of energy that would create thousands of jobs in Missouri.” 
In January 2007, Graves voted no to taking away royalties and tax incentives to big oil and gas companies, ultimately contributing to their record high profits, which this quarter alone reached over $11.7 billon.  Since elected, Graves  has voted in line with the Bush Administration on every major energy vote.
“Eight years of energy policy by George Bush and his friends at Exxon created the mess we’re in today,” Massaro said. “It’s time those policies were put back on the shelf right next to Sam Graves’s rubber stamp.  In the seven years Graves has been in office we have seen gas prices increase over 250%. It is time for Missouri to get the representation that it deserves, and move away from the price increases that Graves promises to deliver.”
Also in 2007, Graves voted against efforts to increase the use of clean energy technologies. He voted against fuel economy standards that would save families hundreds of dollars in fuel prices in 2005, 2006, and 2007.  In 2007, he voted in favor of a bill to allow polluters to dump as many as 25 tons of chemicals like mercury and arsenic into the air without having to take steps to reduce their emissions.  In 2005, he voted against a provision to maintain the standards of the Clean Water Act, allowing for the pollution of countless lakes and streams across the country.
“From keeping our air and water clean to making our cars more efficient, Sam Graves has been wrong at every turn,” Massaro said.  “That’s why he takes his rightful place with the worst politicians in the country on this year’s Dirty Dozen.”
*LCV's trademark "Dirty Dozen" program targets current and former members of Congress - regardless of party affiliation - who consistently vote against the environment and are running in races where LCV has a serious chance of affecting the outcome.  Other 2008 members include Senator Mitch McConnell, Senator Mary Landrieu, former Congressman Bob Schaffer, Congressman Steve Pearce, Senator Jim Inhofe, and Senator Ted Stevens.  The rest of the Dirty Dozen will be announced in the coming weeks.
**The non-partisan LCV Scorecard is a nationally accepted yardstick used to rate Members of Congress on conservation and clean energy issues. Based on key conservation votes in the House and Senate, it is often used by the media to quickly describe a Member's record.  For more information, visit  

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