Deep Drilling, Deep Pockets
Campaign Cash and Fracking Regulation in Pennsylvania
Natural gas interests have spent more than $747 million during a 10-year campaign – stunningly successful so far – to avoid government regulation of hydraulic “fracking,” a fast-growing and environmentally risky process used in Pennsylvania and at least a dozen other states to tap underground gas reserves.
A faction of the natural gas industry has directed more than $20 million to the campaigns of current members of Congress – including nearly $1 million to Pennsylvanians -- and put $726 million into lobbying aimed at shielding itself from oversight, according to the report, the third in a series of “Deep Drilling, Deep Pockets."
Two Pennsylvanians, Rep. Tim Murphy, and Sen. Pat Toomey, ranked among the leading recipients in Congress in gas industry donations (ranked 10th and 28th respectively). Murphy has received $275,499 and Toomey $160,750. Several other Pennsylvania lawmakers also were major recipients, including Rep. Jason Altmire (D) with $65,365; Rep. Jim Gerlach (R) with $60,800; Rep. Bill Shuster (R) with $59,000; Rep. Charles Dent (R) with $56,500; and Rep. Glenn Thompson (R) with $52,000.