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Hullabaloo


Monday, August 04, 2008

 
Follow The Money

by dday

I think we're finally starting to see some traction on John McCain's ties to the corporatocracy, in this case Big Oil. It takes a candidate ad to put these things into the media bloodstream, and now they're a bit more encouraged to run with it. Campaign Money Watch has done some good work with this too. The fact that McCain got over a million dollars in oil executive contributions almost immediately after relinquishing on his stance on offshore drilling is too juicy to pass up, and the revelation of the Hess Corporation donations add to the intrigue.

Senator John McCain received a burst of donations in June from oil company employees after he came out in favor of offshore drilling, according to a report released last week by Campaign Money Watch, a watchdog organization.

But the largest collective response from a single company, the report noted, came from the Hess Corporation. Together, Hess employees or their relatives poured out more than $300,000 to Mr. McCain’s joint fund-raising committee with the Republican National Committee in June, according to campaign finance records.

On Monday, after the web site, Talking Points Memo, listed the names of the Hess contributors, scrutiny fell on a couple, Alice Rocchio, who is identified in campaign finance records as an office manager at Hess, and her husband, Pasquale, who is listed as a foreman at Amtrak.

They each gave a whopping $28,500 to Mr. McCain and the Republican National Committee [...]

Mr. McCain’s joint fund-raising committee took in more than $1.2 million in contributions in Texas alone from oil and gas-related donors in June, according to Campaign Money Watch. More than 70 percent of that money came after June 15, the day before Mr. McCain came out in favor of offshore drilling.


Further digging from the WaPo has found that a driver for Hess maxed out to McCain as well. It's an unlikely profile for a $2,300 donor.

It's entirely possible these contributions are legitimate and that Hess staffers just love McCain ever since he flipped on drilling. That's the charitable explanation. The bad one is illegal straw contributions from oil companies, and McCain's track record on campaign finance in this election (he's actually breaking the law as we speak) is not good.

It's well-established that the McCain campaign is crawling with lobbyists and deeply corrupted by their influence, with the new set of positions matching the concerns of the new corporate contributors. This set of oil company donations is the most vibrant example, and so it makes the most sense to continue on the offense and keep pointing them out.


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