AGs’ motives questioned as Exxon climate change ‘fraud’ probe recalls tobacco windfall

claude walkerAfter winning an $800 million settlement last year against Hess Oil, Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude E. Walker was eager to find what he described as other litigation “targets.”

He found one such deep pocket in Exxon Mobil. But his investigation into whether the company engaged in climate change “fraud” is drawing accusations that the end game for Mr. Walker and other like-minded attorneys general is a mammoth payday modeled after the 1998 tobacco settlement.

Mr. Walker has been the most aggressive member of AGs United for Clean Power, an unprecedented coalition of 17 attorneys general aimed at pursuing fraud accusations against Exxon Mobil and other fossil fuel companies.

“I believe this $800 million settlement gives the Virgin Islands Attorney General a lot of credibility in being involved in the inner circle of this because he’s proved that he can shake down a major company,” said Myron Ebell, director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, one of Mr. Walker’s targets.

And the Exxon investigation may be just the beginning.

“In talking about widening the investigation, the goal is to bring in the entire oil industry. It’s not just Exxon they’re after,” Mr. Ebell said.

Already comparisons have been drawn between AGs United for Clean Power and the state officials who secured the 1998 deal in which five major tobacco companies agreed to pay $10 billion per year indefinitely to the states.

“It was a combined effort in which the state attorneys general played the crucial role in securing a historic victory for public health,” said former Vice President Al Gore Jr. at the coalition’s March 29 press conference in New York City.

“From the time the tobacco companies were first found out, as evidenced by the historic [Surgeon General’s report] of 1964, it took 40 years for them to be held to account under the law,” Mr. Gore said. “We do not have 40 years to continue suffering the consequences of the fraud allegedly being committed by the fossil fuel companies where climate change is concerned.”

Pushing for a parallel effort at the federal end is Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, Rhode Island Democrat, who reiterated his call Wednesday for the Justice Department to launch a probe into the oil-and-gas industry.

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  • Avatar

    JayPee

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    Al Gore’s 10 years till doomsday expired last January. Are we supposed to wait another 40 for his lies to come true. He’ll be all for it as long as it’s 40 years of shakedown money headed his way.

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  • Avatar

    DMA

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    Mr. Gore said. “We do not have 40 years to continue suffering the consequences of the fraud allegedly being committed by the fossil fuel companies where climate change is concerned.”
    Alleged consequences are not provable damages. This “climate change” probe has some motivation other than a lawsuit payment like the tobacco episode. Unless these AGs are really not smart or informed at all they must know they will have huge problems showing damages. I think the motive is political power and posturing.

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  • Avatar

    Amber

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    Translated Gore does not have 40 years . Finally something I would agree with him on .
    The same impatience that prompted “the science is settled ” BS .
    Other than being lobbyists for a heavily subsidized and tax payer grant seeking industry the AG’s silencing and gold digging venture will back fire . So yes by all means let’s get the scary global warming scam to court before some of the ring leaders develop dementia .

    Given the third world basket case finances of many USA States it is not surprising they would like someone to bail themselves out of their self induced bankruptcies .

    Kind of like buying a lottery ticket to pay off your mortgage but the odds are better with the lottery ticket .

    AG’s acting as lobbyists while on the tax payers payroll and then without consulting with voters nor explaining this witch hunt could cost tax payers $$Billions in damages .

    On a positive note all the global warming cheerleaders will finally get their asses dragged into court so this scam can properly be exposed with sworn testimony . Some of the scary global warming promoters may even get day passes from jail to share their wisdom .

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  • Avatar

    Amber

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    The 2014 audited statements of the Virgin Islands contains over 100 pages containing statements like “Management does not appear to have adequate policies and procedures in place to ensure compliance with applicable cost principles ” .
    For fiscal 2014 the government only funded 36% of the minimum annual required contribution to the pension that has a $3.1 Billion dollar liability .

    Any chance the Virgin Islands is hoping
    a bag of “climate change ” denier money can be shaken out of those they are Investigating ? Nah, it’s all about saving the planet from its fever isn’t it ?

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  • Avatar

    Amber

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    Virgin Islands Governor Mapp ” Our government is nearing the brink of financial collapse ” January 2015 . Enter AG Walker former EPA bureaucrat . Who you going to call ?

    The Virgin Islands are sinking all right…. from debt . Come on Exxon how about sending a little cash even if global warming is a good thing .
    Beautiful place ,wonderful people , and a spending / revenue problem . Banks get bailed out ,car companies get bailed out , hedge fund gamblers get bailed out , show them the money . But let’s not confuse this with complete nonsense about when anybody knew the world was warming and surprise humans might even be making some small contribution to that happy event . Find another boggie mann .

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  • Avatar

    Amber

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    So the USA government of Obama believes the earth has a fever . With that knowledge why have they not banded fossil fuels ?
    They haven’t banded fossil fuels because soon or later one of largest scams in history is going to land itself and it’s promoters in court . It’s always been about the money .

    The scam deflation has started in earnest as the stream of “renewable “companies implodes and more scientists refuse to be intimidated into silence .

    The real desperate losers are now on stage as the scam takes on water .

    Reply

  • Avatar

    JayPee

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    Amber your points are well taken but
    I think every rational non-muslim person in the world recognizes
    what a phony imposter self-aggrandizing jerk
    the current white house occupant is.

    Given that.

    The next occupant can probably summarily undue his traitorous conduct including removal of his judicial appointments for lack of citizenship.

    Yes, his totally unconstitutional acts of dictatorship can be summarily undone as long as there is an executive committed to that and a legistlature that will not challenged it regardless that there is a extremist leftist media that will object and vilify anything that they have not previously approved of.

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  • Avatar

    Amber

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    JayPee we can hope .you are right .

    Reply

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