Battle Over Climate Fraud Investigation Comes to Washington

September 14, 2016
In The News

Who can subpoena who? That’s the issue a House committee and attorneys debated today when it comes to potential climate change-related fraud.

The hearing centered on whether state attorneys general—who have subpoenaed Exxon Mobil Corp. to see if it lied to its investors about how climate change would affect its business—now must respond to House Science, Space and Technology Committee subpoenas into the climate investigation.

Republicans argued that the subpoenas to the state attorneys general were appropriate because the state attorneys general probe could affect federally funded scientific research. Democrats, on the other hand, said the committee’s subpoenas were inappropriate, inconsistent with other House committees’ jurisdiction interpretations and unprecedented, in part because it would investigate state-funded activities.

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) and environmental groups that were also subpoenaed by the committee over the states’ climate probes protested the hearing before it occurred, with Whitehouse calling the pushback to the attorneys general investigation a “campaign of dishonesty.”