THE BLOG

#DirtyDenier$ Day 6: Scott Brown

08/11/2014 06:11 am ET | Updated Oct 11, 2014

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In 2012, Massachusetts voters decided they didn't like Senator Scott Brown's loyalty to Big Oil and they voted him out of the Senate. This year, he's back, but in New Hampshire, where he is trying to unseat Senator Jeanne Shaheen.

In May 2011, Senator Brown voted to protect billions in taxpayer subsidies to oil companies even though they were enjoying record profits. It was later revealed through FEC records that just two weeks before the vote, he had accepted contributions from Exxon, Chevron, and ConocoPhillips. In March 2012, Senator Brown again voted against ending the subsidies. Over his career, he has accepted $454,000 from the Oil and Gas industry. To put that in perspective, in 2012, Senator Brown received more money from the Oil and Gas industry than all but five other members of Congress (and more than all but two other Senators).

Not only did Senator Brown vote in May 2011 to keep giving billions of dollars to oil companies instead of using that money to reduce the deficit or invest in renewable energy, he also voted to weaken the oversight standards of offshore drilling operations. This was after the tragic 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, and would have weakened oversight even beyond what was in place during that catastrophe.

When Senator Brown tried to explain away these unpopular pro-oil votes, he claimed (incorrectly) that "oil companies don't get subsidies." Our friends at the League of Conservation Voters explained why that is completely false.

That record is far out of line with what Granite Staters want in a Senator. Many voters in New Hampshire are aware of Senator Brown's record in the Senate, and according to a July Marist poll, he has a very divided favorable/unfavorable rating (38 to 37 percent). Also, a majority of New Hampshire adults (53 percent) and two-thirds of adults under age 30 support limits on power plant emission of greenhouse gases that cause global warming, even if utility costs are passed down to consumers. In his last bid for the Senate, Brown said he believes climate change is real, but would not support efforts by the EPA to reduce dangerous carbon emissions.

The Koch Brothers and their Big Oil allies know that electing Scott Brown in New Hampshire is an uphill battle, and that's why they've already bought ad time for the month of September to the tune of $1.2 million on one New Hampshire television station alone. It's a safe bet that this is only the tip of the iceberg of Big Oil's effort to buy a Senate seat (again) for Scott Brown.

Our advice: It's time for Scott Brown to stop shopping for a Senate seat with dirty polluters' credit cards.