Campaign 2010

May 19, 2011

Representative Calvert Sells California Coast for $180,000

Representative Ken Calvert’s (CA-44) vote in favor of the most sweeping expansion of offshore drilling in our nation’s history has essentially given Big Oil the keys to the California coast.  Not surprising since Calvert’s Big Oil & Gas buddies have given him more than $180,000 in campaign contributions.  This isn’t the first time that Calvert has voted in favor of Big Oil, he recently chose to end Medicare rather than cut subsidies for Big Oil.

 

“The Grand Oil Party’s Representative Ken Calvert has essentially sold California’s coast to Big Oil,” said Gabriela Domenzain of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.  “First Congressman Ken Calvert voted to end Medicare instead of cutting subsidies for Big Oil and now he’s voted for the most sweeping expansion of offshore drilling in our nation’s history, essentially handing Big Oil the keys to the California Coast.  Calvert’s Big Oil buddies have given him over $180,000 in campaign contributions, they must be pleased.”

 

Background

 

Rep. Calvert Voted to Allow Drilling Off Portions of Coast of California. On May 12, 2011, Ken Calvert voted against an amendment that specified that  HR1231 did “not allow for oil and gas drilling in the Northern California Planning Area of the outer continental shelf.” Calvert also voted for final passage of HR1231, which as the Press Democrat noted, included drilling in portions of the California coast. According to the nonpartisan Center for Investigative Reporting, “Under existing law, the government decides which areas to lease. This new law would effectively double the current level of offshore drilling. And states, such as California, would have no say in the matter.” [Thompson of California Amendment No. 7 to HR 1231, Vote #317, 5/12/11; HR 1231, Vote #320, 5/12/11; CQ Floor Votes; Press Democrat, 5/9/11; California Watch, 5/4/11]

 

H.R. 1231 Mandated Most Sweeping Expansion of Offshore Drilling in Nations History. According to an official press release from House Democratic Leader Pelosi, “H.R. 1231 passed by a vote of 243-179 on May 12th and mandates the most sweeping expansion of offshore drilling in our nations history making broad swaths of the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts open for leasing automatically.”  [House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, press release, 5/12/11]

 

Took Over $180,000 from Oil and Gas Industry. Calvert has taken $189,974 from the oil and gas industry while in Congress. [opensecrets.org, accessed 5/11/11]

 

Voted to End Medicare Rather than Cut Subsidies for Big Oil. Representative Calvert voted to end Medicare by supporting the Republican budget. [H Con. Res. 34, Vote #277, 4/15/11]

 

Big Oil Profits Up 38 Percent. “Americans spent 28 percent more for gasoline during the first three months of 2011 than the same period in 2010. Meanwhile, the big five oil companies—BP, Chevron, Conoco Phillips, ExxonMobil, and Shell—made 38 percent more profit.” [Center for American Progress, 5/3/11]

 

  • ExxonMobil reported profits of nearly $11 billion in the first quarter of 2011, a 69 percent increase. Shell reported profits of $7 billion, ConocoPhillips reported profits of $3 billion, Chevron reported $6.2 billion, and BP reported $5.5 billion. [Center for American Progress, 5/3/11; ABC News, 4/28/11]

 

  • In March, the Democratic Steering & Policy Committee held a hearing noting that from 2005 to 2009, the largest oil companies have made $485 billion in profits. [climateprogress.org, 3/01/11]

 

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