Pat Toomey’s Payback to Big Oil at PA’s Expense


After Raking In $500K in Big Oil Campaign Donations, Toomey Offers Amendment Gutting the Renewable Fuel Standard,
Even As It Supports Thousands of Jobs in PA and Gives Consumers Cheaper, Cleaner Choices at the Pump


Washington DC (Jan. 20, 2015) – Pro-biofuels, pro-environment, pro-jobs group Americans United for Change today blasted an amendment introduced by Senator Pat Toomey, calling the ‘Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act’  a job-killer and an affront to the economy. The ethanol industry supports nearly 400,000 American jobs, including 3,300 jobs in the Keystone State. Toomey’s legislation is strongly supported by the oil industry that wants to see the Renewable Fuel Standard repealed entirely and that has contributed more than half a million dollars to Toomey’s campaign and leadership PAC over the years.


Jeremy Funk, Comm. Director, Americans United for Change: “Make no mistake: this legislation has nothing to do with protecting consumers or the environment, as Toomey claims, and everything to do with protecting Big Oil’s bottom line.  It is legislation written-by-and-for the oil industry that has spent millions of dollars lying about ethanol in an effort put their cheaper, cleaner competition out of business.  It seems Senator Toomey is eager to pay back Big Oil’s generosity to his campaign, even if it means jeopardizing thousands of jobs in Pennsylvania.”


“It’s laughable that Sen. Toomey would cite ‘the environment’ among his concerns about ethanol considering he’s a climate-change denier. If Toomey really cared about the environment, he’d be for supportive of  a robust Renewable Fuel Standard because a recent peer-reviewed study found that corn ethanol, on average, lowers greenhouse gas emissions by 34 percent compared to regular gasoline. 


“If Toomey were serious about fighting rising food prices, he would hold his Big Oil friends accountable, whom the World Bank has concluded are responsible for over half of the increase in food prices since 2004 due to the high cost of transportation around the globe.  The fact is the World Bank and a number of leading ag academics and economists have studied renewable fuels’ impact on food prices at the grocery store extensively and concluded there simply isn’t one.  


“The real irony is that Sen. Toomey fancies himself a champion of the free market, and yet here he is trying to help rig the game for his Big Oil donors and push ethanol off the playing field. Consumers have benefited tremendously from the increased completion at the pump that the Renewable Fuel Standard has promoted. In fact, ethanol has saved Americans as much $1.09 per gallon, not to mention cut down our nation’s dependence of foreign oil by 45%.   The ethanol mandate is a win-win for the economy and environment, but Sen. Toomey wants to mess with success.  It’s unfortunate that Sen. Toomey is so in the tank for Big Oil that he’s even willing to sell out Pennsylvania jobs to do their dirty work.”


Why Mess With Success? : The Renewable Fuel Standard Has Been a Big Win for Pa.’s Economyrecent report by Fuels America found that the RFS has driven $3.6 billion in economic output in Pennsylvania, supported nearly 18,000 jobs and $915 million in wages, and netted $84.5 million in taxes for the Keystone State each year.