Quantcast
Connect with us

Energy commission stacked with Trump appointees is shielding a big political donor

Published

on

Thanks for your support!
This article was paid for by reader donations to Raw Story Investigates.

This article was paid for by Raw Story subscribers. Not a subscriber? Try us and go ad-free for $1. Prefer to give a one-time tip? Click here.

Sarah Okeson
Sarah Okeson

A federal commission stacked with Trump appointees said the organization that runs our nation’s largest wholesale electricity market may keep secret how it spends millions of Americans’ utility-bill dollars on lobbying and political contributions.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, ostensibly independent, slapped down a complaint by a watchdog group known as Public Citizen. The watchdog wanted PJM Interconnection to disclose spending.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We will not require PJM to itemize and disclose all political-related spending and deny the complaint on this issue,” commissioners wrote.

PJM gave at least $456,500 to the Democratic Governors Association and the Republican Governors Association from October 2007 to August 2017, according to Public Citizen’s complaint.

Such donations, said Public Citizen, are “the wild, wild West of campaign finance” because they aren’t limited by state or federal rules and can be used to funnel large amounts of money to candidates for office.

The Trump-dominated commission dubbed the money “membership fees” that let PJM maintain “access to these organizations to keep informed on policy initiatives impacting the wholesale markets and to help educate state policymakers.”

Tyson Slocum of Public Citizen said FERC has signaled with this decision that it thinks the commission has no jurisdiction over many internal actions of organizations like PJM that are formed with the commission’s approval to monitor our nation’s electrical system.

ADVERTISEMENT

FERC has legally signaled the organizations are Frankensteins, monsters they created but no longer control, Slocum said.

PJM is funded by payments tens of millions of Americans make through monthly utility bills in the District of Columbia and 13 states where PJM operates, including Illinois, Virginia, New Jersey and Ohio. People who pay electricity bills have no control over how PJM or other utilities that make pay-to-play contributions are spending the money.

“If this was a county official or the mayor of a town, there would be outrage,” Slocum said.

ADVERTISEMENT

The case was decided by Chairman Neil Chatterjee, a Republican, and commissioners Richard Glick, a Democrat, and Bernard McNamee, a Republican. All three are Trump appointees. The commission has two vacancies. Trump recently nominated James Danly, another Republican, who is the general counsel for the commission.

This article was paid for by Raw Story subscribers. Not a subscriber? Try us and go ad-free for $1. Prefer to give a one-time tip? Click here.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

House Republicans have 3 key defenses of Trump’s Ukraine extortion campaign — and they’re all terrible

Published

on

To any halfway objective observer, the first day of public hearings in House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry, which are ongoing as of this writing, have not gone well for Trump’s defenders.

Bill Taylor, the top US ambassador in Kyiv, and veteran State Department official George Kent came off as principled and non-partisan as they delivered damning testimony about the Trump regime’s multifaceted campaign to coerce the Ukrainian government to announce an investigation into fringe right-wing conspiracy theories designed to deflect blame for interfering in the 2016 election from Russia and onto Ukraine.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Progressives hilariously ridicule Donald Trump Jr.’s new book with their own Trump triggers #TriggerDonaldTrumpJr

Published

on

President Donald Trump's eldest child and namesake has published a book about liberals he says are "triggered" by conservatives. Ironically, it seems Donald Trump Jr. is the one who seems to be triggered by the reception he's getting from some on his book tour.

The hashtag, #TriggerDonaldTrumpJr has nothing to do with Jr's new book, rather it's progressives using his book title to mock the Trump child. Internet users were torn between mocking the young Trump for desperately trying to get his father's attention, scrambling to seem relevant, trying to launch his own political career, trying to make his own money and so much more.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

‘Blather and hysteria’: Conservative columnist explains why GOP anti-impeachment ‘antics’ just crashed and burned

Published

on

devin nunes defeat

Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Rep. Devin Nunes of California and other House Republicans were clearly trying to rally the Trumpian base on Wednesday, when the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump offered its first public testimony. Jordan and Nunes aggressively tried to discredit the inquiry and the two witnesses who testified: diplomat William B. Taylor (U.S. ambassador to Ukraine) and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George P. Kent. But conservative Washington Post opinion writer Jennifer Rubin, in a Wednesday column, stressed that House Republicans — for all their “antics and conspiracy theories” — failed to show why Trump shouldn’t be impeached, while House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff and other House Democrats showed why he should.

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image