Senators Murkowski, Lincoln and Representative Joe Barton all targeted by "PolluterHarmony" dating site for dealings with oil and coal lobbyists.
"It takes strong relationships and the right chemistry to devise schemes that successfully evade or destroy environmental regulations," at least that is the claim made in an elaborate hoax internet dating site targeting members of Congress for their relationships with energy industry lobbyists.
Launched just this week, PolluterHarmony.com, claims to be "the #1 matchmaking service for polluters, industry lobbyists, and politicians."
The spoof is replete with a series of vignettes and accompanying eHarmony-like satirical television commercials [see video below], that poke fun at the cozy relationships between lobbyists, energy companies and a handful of powerful Senators and Representatives.
Orchestrated by Greenpeace and their PolluterWatch program, PolluterHarmony takes particular aim at the Republican senator from Alaska, Lisa Murkowski, who, in recent weeks, has been working to build support for legislation that would prevent the EPA from regulating greenhouse gases. The written testimonial from "Lisa":
"When I saw Jeff's profile, I couldn't believe I found a lobbyist with so much money to contribute to my re-election campaigns and so many big coal and utility industry clients... I thought 'He's just what I'm looking for!' We instantly clicked — in our first phone conversation, he told me he could bundle $10,000 by our first date."
Of course, the "Jeff" that "Lisa" speaks of is supposed to be high-powered energy lobbyist Jeffrey Holmstead of the law firm Bracewell & Giuliani. Holmstead, who was reportedly involved in drafting the language for the anti-EPA Murkowski amendment, was also a Bush-era EPA official and a major player in Bush's Clear Skies Initiative -- a program that allowed a 520 percent increase in mercury pollution, a 225 percent jump in carbon dioxide pollution, and a delay in the enforcement of smog and soot pollution until 2016. "Jeff"'s praise of "Lisa" is equally glowing:
"She has the some of the same hobbies I do, she likes to stay up late at night and gut energy bills -- and so do I.... We don't spend a lot of time together but it's like we finish each others legislation...
But not everyone thinks the prank is funny. In particular, a spokesman for Sen. Lisa Murkowski called the "highly offensive" ads a personal attack that "clearly crosses the line."
"This is a perfect example of what's wrong with Washington," Murkowski spokesman Robert Dillon told Greenwire. "Too often outside groups go for the personal attack when they can't win on the merits. Rather than have a legitimate debate about the policy, they launch a smear campaign."
Dillon did not expand on what he meant by "outside groups" when referring to the environmental organizations responsible for making the ads.
Dillon said the site featured "insults to the senator and her family -- as if these people have no bounds, no sense of truth, and no interest in meaningful climate policy. Greenpeace should be downright ashamed to be associated with, let alone paying for, these ads."
We'll let you make your own moral judgment:
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