WASHINGTON, D.C. – The League of Conservation Voters (LCV), the independent political voice for the environment, today announced that former U.S. Rep. Bob Schaffer (R-CO) has been named to its 2008 “Dirty Dozen” list.
“During his tenure in Congress, Bob Schaffer worked to get Big Oil $33 billion in tax breaks by supporting an energy bill written by Dick Cheney and the oil industry. After leaving the House, he went to work for Big Oil. Now he wants to return to Washington to work for them in the Senate,” said LCV Senior Vice President and Colorado native Tony Massaro. “Coloradans deserve a senator who works for them, not Big Oil.“
“In the 2006 elections, while 94 percent of incumbents won re-election, 9 out of 13 members of LCV’s ‘Dirty Dozen’ list were defeated. In 2008, we plan to continue our success rate,” Massaro said. “Schaffer, with his abysmal 5% LCV lifetime score, has a well-earned place on our Dirty Dozen list.”
Dirty Dozen Member # 3: Former Rep. Bob Schaffer
Bob Schaffer is a career politician turned oil executive. His anti-environmental record in Congress and his misplaced loyalties are clear. He has accepted more than $75,000 in donations from the oil and gas industry and was a major supporter of the Bush-Cheney energy plan, which doled out $33 billion in tax breaks for the energy industry. He has consistently voted against incentives for developing alternative fuel vehicles and has fought increased fuel efficiency standards for automobiles. He also has voted against increasing funding for energy efficiency and conservation programs.
In 2003 he supported Referendum A, a $4 billion blank check to the state legislature that would have raided Western Slope water for farms, ranches and people and delivered it to developers on the Front Range. As a member of the House he voted against enforcing arsenic and radon water standards and opposed protecting water from mining pollution. In addition, Schaffer argued in favor of allowing nuclear waste to be transported on Colorado highways.
“Every chance he had, Bob Schaffer sided with polluters, developers and Big Oil and against the environment and the health and safety of Coloradans,” Massaro concluded. “Time and time again, Bob Schaffer has proved that he is just too extreme for Colorado.”
Now, as an executive at Aspect Energy, Schaffer develops international oil and gas opportunities, including making oil deals in Iraq. His company also is pursuing coal-based investments, siding with the dirty energy of the past instead of the clean, renewable energy of the future.
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. Schaffer joins Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) and Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) who were named to the 2008 “Dirty Dozen” last fall.
Since the “Dirty Dozen” was launched in 1996, LCV has helped defeat more than half of the candidates named to the list. In 2006 alone, LCV helped oust several supposedly “undefeatable” incumbents, including former House Resources Chairman Richard Pombo (R-CA), and former Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Montana). Other “Dirty Dozen” members who were defeated in ’06 include: Sens. George Allen (R-VA), Rick Santorum (R-PA), and Jim Talent (R-MO), and Reps. Bob Beauprez (R-CO), Katherine Harris (R-FL), J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ), and Charles Taylor (R-NC). In addition, two members of the “Dirty Dozen” resigned: Reps. Tom Delay (R-TX) and Bob Ney (R-OH).
LCV will name the rest of the 2008 Dirty Dozen members in the coming months. Stay tuned. For more on LCV’s “Dirty Dozen” list, check out: http://www.lcv.org/campaigns/dirty-dozen