Two billionaire-backed anti-fossil fuel groups pressured the Internal Revenue Service Thursday to punish Exxon Mobil for supposedly running an illegal scheme with a conservative think tank to push an anti-global warming agenda.
The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) and Common Cause provided the IRS whistleblower division a series of documents it says details intentional misuse of free market group the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) by Exxon to advance policies helping the company.
The oil company has spent more than $1.7 million to finance ALEC on legislation while also claiming a tax deduction on those expenditures, according to CMD and Common Cause’s complaint to the IRS.
CMD has used wealthy benefactors such as liberal billionaire George Soros’s Open Society Foundation and the Rockefeller Family Foundation (RFF) to pillory the likes of Exxon and others in the fossil fuel industry.
RFF, for its part, is one of the groups pushing investigations into Exxon, essentially giving CMD skin in a game that’s main goal is to see the giant oil company brought down to size.
RFF’s effort was part of a multi-year campaign to bring federal charges against Exxon for allegedly withholding knowledge about global warming from shareholders and the general public.