An oil industry lobbyist drafts an anti-ethanol letter. Members of Congress sign the letter. The letter is sent to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
This practice isn’t uncommon — Big Oil and its deep pockets lead many organizations around by the nose as they strive to kill the Renewable Fuel Standard, roll back the use of homegrown biofuels and strengthen its monopoly on our fuel tanks and wallets.
But there’s no excuse for members of Congress from corn producing states to fall into Big Oil’s anti-ethanol trap. They should know better. At the very least, they should know not to turn their backs on farmers and rural communities in their own district in order to side with outside oil interests who could care less about what happens back home.
The letter contains the usual long disproven myths and tired talking points we hear from Big Oil about the blend wall. Yet that didn’t stop the House members listed below who represent corn-producing states from blindly signing on to the letter, even though it’s been proven that the letter was drafted by a cog in the Big Oil machine.
There are no Minnesota representatives on that list. Congressman like Collin Peterson and Tim Walz have been strong supporters of homegrown ethanol and recognize the benefits it has provided for air quality, consumers and rural communities.
Unfortunately, not every state is as lucky as Minnesota in having representatives who understand the benefits of homegrown biofuels, and who won’t blindly sign on to an effort so blatantly spearheaded by paid shills for Big Oil.
Wesley Spurlock, a farmer in Texas and First Vice President of the National Corn Growers Association, is spot on with this quote:
“Ethanol is the backbone of the rural economy, and the elected officials who represent these communities need to hear from us. It’s up to us to tell them this is unacceptable and hold them accountable. Corn farmers are doing their part to feed and fuel America. It’s time for Congress to do their part and stand up for energy independence, clean air, and strong rural communities.”
Here is a list of the misguided members of Congress who signed onto Big Oil’s anti-ethanol letter:
Colorado: Mike Coffman (R), Doug Lamborn (R)
Illinois: Robert Dold (R)
Kansas: Mike Pompeo (R)
Kentucky: Thomas Massie (R), Andy Barr (R)
Maryland: Andy Harris (R)
Michigan: Dan Benishek (R), Mike Bishop (R), Tim Walberg (R)
Missouri: Billy Long (R)
North Carolina: G. K. Butterfield (D), Robert Pittenger (R), David Rouzer (R), George Holding (R), Renee Elmers (R), Walter Jones (R), Virginia Foxx (R), Richard Hudson (R)
New York: John Katko (R), Christopher Gibson (R), Tom Reed (R), Chris Collins (R), Lee Zeldin (R), Richard Hanna (R), Peter King (R)
Ohio: Jim Jordan (R), Steve Chabot (R), Bradley Wenstrup (R)
Pennsylvania: Lou Barletta (R), Glenn Thompson (R), Ryan Costello (R), Joseph Pitts (R), Keith Rothfus (R), Charles Dent (R), Bill Shuster (R), Patrick Meehan (R), Tim Murphy (R), Scott Perry (R), Mike Kelly (R)
Texas: Marc Veasey (D), Henry Cuellar (D), Filemon Vela (D), Gene Green (D), Ruben Hinojosa (D), Joaquin Castro (D), Kevin Brady (R), Will Hurd (R), Randy Weber (R), Kay Granger (R), Randy Neugebauer (R), Roger Williams (R), Jeb Hensarling (R), Pete Session (R), Louie Gohmert (R), Lamar Smith (R), Mike Conaway (R), Sam Johnson (R), Kenny Marchant (R), Michael Burgess (R), John Culberson (R), Ted Poe (R), Blake Farenthold (R), Michael McCaul (R), Brian Babin (R), John Ratcliffe (R), Joe Barton (R), John Carter (R), Pete Olson (R), Mac Thornberry (R), Bill Flores (R)
Virginia: Scott Rigell (R), Robert Wittman (R), Morgan Griffith (R), Robert Hurt (R), Barbara Comstock (R), Dave Brat (R), Bob Goodlatte (R)
Wisconsin: Glenn Grothman (R), James Sensenbrenner (R)