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The combative head of an anti-environmentalist Washington, D.C. nonprofit with Colorado roots vowed on Thursday to appeal last week’s Montana Supreme Court ruling upholding the state’s nearly 100-year-old ban on corporate campaign spending.
A pro-industry, anti-environmentalist non-profit first registered in Colorado and now operating out of the Washington, D.C. area is “clearly spending money to influence Montana elections,” an assistant attorney general in that state argued this week.
A moderate Montana Republican who says her bid for state lawmaker last year was torpedoed by the illegal campaign tactics of an anti-green, pro-drilling political group registered in Colorado has seen her ranch on the Yellowstone River near Laurel inundated with ExxonMobil oil.
Sportsmen’s groups as far away as Colorado are deeply concerned about the potential degradation of fish and wildlife habitat resulting from Friday’s ExxonMobil oil spill in the pristine Yellowstone River 20 miles upstream from Billings, Mont
Xcel Energy, the state’s largest utility and a key backer of Colorado’s aggressive renewable energy standard (RES), reacted with skepticism to Monday’s lawsuit seeking to overturn a state law mandating 30 percent of Xcel’s electricity be produced by renewable sources by 2020. “... We understand that [the complaint] was made by a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy organization,” Xcel spokesman Mark Stutz told the Colorado Independent. “We would be surprised if a federal court would overturn Colorado's legislatively approved Renewable Energy Standard.”
A nonprofit anti-clean-energy lobbying group active in Colorado politics is taking credit for derailing the presidential aspirations of former Republic Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich at last week’s Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington. American Tradition Partnership (ATP), a 501(c)4 “dedicated to fighting environmental extremism,” has ties to Western Tradition Partnership, a group that has targeted numerous Democratic candidates in Colorado dating back to 2008. Increasingly, the groups are targeting Republicans seen as too moderate on environmental and energy issues.
Colorado State Senator Morgan Carroll, D-Aurora, said she missed an opportunity to head off the controversy now surrounding newly elected Secretary of State Scott Gessler. Carroll had been weighing whether or not to introduce legislation that would have set strict disclosure laws for the secretary of state's office in particular and tightened state worker conflict-of-interest laws in general. She didn't introduce that bill but that doesn't mean a legislative response to the Gessler controversy is off the table, she said.
The head of a conservative nonprofit blasted by Democrats for “tasteless” and possibly illegal mailers targeting state Sen. Gail Schwartz in last month’s election told The Colorado Independent (TCI) Tuesday that “we engaged in no electioneering or 527 activity and always follow the law.” Donald Ferguson, executive director of Western Tradition Partnership (WTP), clarified that the mailers featuring Schwartz’s face on Donald Trump’s body with the tagline “You’re Fired!” were paid for by the registered 501(c)4 “social welfare” nonprofit, not an associated 527 group called Western Tradition Partnership Education Fund.
In the wake of a flood of untraceable 501(c)4 funds pouring into 527 political groups such as the Western Tradition Partnership in this month's general election, state Sen. Morgan Carroll, D-Aurora, said she is working to make Colorado the first state in the nation to compel the nonprofit "social welfare" groups to disclose political donations to 527s.
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