ARRA News Service
ARRA News Service facebook page  
News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used.
Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
Contact: (Pub. Since July, 2006)
    Home Page

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Secret Deal Among AGs to Prosecute Climate Change ‘Deniers’ Challenged in Court

Former Vice President Al Gore joins 17 state
attorneys general March 29, 2016, to announce a
state-based effort to prosecute climate change deniers.

.Photo: Mike Segar/Reuters/Newscom via The Daily Signal
by Kevin Mooney: By signing a “secrecy pact” with fellow Democrat attorneys general preparing to prosecute climate change skeptics, Rhode Island’s top law enforcement officer jeopardized free speech rights and government transparency laws, according to two legal organizations that have taken him to court.

Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Kilmartin’s tactics in supporting President Barack Obama’s climate change policy violate state law guaranteeing access to public records, the two groups, Energy and Environment Legal Institute and Free Market Environmental Law Clinic, claim in their lawsuit.

If Kilmartin and the other attorneys general prevail in the deal to keep select details secret, the ordinary citizen will be the loser, Chris Horner, a leading critic of climate change orthodoxy, said.

“It will mean that they can create privilege for what are otherwise public records, even when shared with ideological activists and donors, so long as everyone who wants to keep their scheming secret agrees in advance,” Horner told The Daily Signal.

The lawsuit, filed July 27 in Rhode Island Superior Court, calls for Kilmartin, a Democrat, to release records that were not previously disclosed in response to the legal organizations’ request in April.

At issue is a “Climate Change Conference Common Interest Agreement” that, email records show, Kilmartin’s representative signed along with representatives of 16 other state attorneys general.

In the past few months, leading political figures and academics who support Obama’s policy on climate change have called for prosecuting those who disagree under the federal law known as RICO — the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.

Congress passed RICO in 1978 for the purpose of prosecuting mob crimes, but now climate change activists want to use it against organizations, corporations, and individual scientists who are not convinced that human activity is responsible for catastrophic climate change.

On March 29, like-minded state attorneys general calling themselves AGs United for Clean Power, held a press conference in New York with former Vice President Al Gore to announce formation of “an unprecedented coalition of top law enforcement” to “defend climate change progress made under President Obama.”

Kilmartin did not attend the press conference but released a supportive statement. On April 13, Energy and Environment Legal Institute and Free Market Environmental Law Clinic requested copies of correspondence in recent months “to or from” Gregory Schultz, a special assistant in the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office who signed the common interest agreement with other state officials.

Schultz is a point of interest in the two groups’ suit because he was Kilmartin’s representative in preparations leading up to the press conference with Gore, according to the legal institute, which described the event as a “publicity stunt.”

‘They Didn’t Have to Turn It Over’
The groups hope to determine when the Obama administration’s allies first organized the “RICO scheme” against opponents of the president’s climate change agenda.

AGs United for Clean Power is led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and includes 25 states, cities, and counties. All but one of the 17 state attorneys general in the coalition are Democrats. Claude E. Walker, of the Virgin Islands, is an independent.

One of the email records released by Kilmartin’s office shows that Schultz agreed to sign off on a draft version of the “common interest agreement” in April. In it, the state attorneys general say they “share common legal interests” with regard to their climate change investigations and agree not to disclose certain information—prompting critics to call it a “secrecy pact.”

In their request for documents, the legal groups used the key phrases “RICO,” “climate denial,” “climate denier,” “climate risk,” and “Gore.”

The nonprofit organizations also asked for copies of correspondence between Schultz “and any employee(s) of the New York Attorney General’s Office,” dated from Feb. 15 through April 13.

“The [Rhode Island] Attorney General’s Office turned over some records, but in other cases claimed exemptions they shouldn’t have taken,” Chaim Mandelbaum, a Virginia lawyer representing the legal groups, told The Daily Signal. “What was particularly egregious is that they decided not to turn over an attachment to an email, and this email showed that [Rhode Island] and other states had decided to sign this common interest agreement.”

Mandelbaum continued:This is the kind of agreement that’s signed among different parties when they are all part of the same litigation. But there is no litigation. None of the states the attorneys general represent are actually suing anyone here, but they still have this agreement. What’s interesting in Rhode Island is that they didn’t say this [email] attachment was exempt pursuant to the law. They just said we didn’t ask for it properly and therefore they didn’t have to turn it over.But Rhode Island’s Access to Public Records Act is written “so clearly” that the two legal groups had no choice but to take action against the attorney general’s “egregious stonewalling,” Mandelbaum said.

Otherwise, the lawyer said, Kilmartin’s office would be “permitted to undercut the very nature of opens records laws.”

‘Get Out of FOIA Free Card’
Horner, a lawyer and senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, told The Daily Signal that he sees Rhode Island fitting into a larger effort.

Horner, who is familiar with the suit against Kilmartin’s office, said “ideologically aligned” attorneys general and “certain outside activists” are trying to exempt themselves from laws, such as the federal Freedom of Information Act, that foster openness and transparency in government.

“They have sought to write themselves out from open records laws their legislatures saw fit to write them into, giving themselves a ‘Get Out of FOIA Free’ card for discussions of certain subject matters–not a suit or any discrete or even formal project, but instead broad, sweeping topics, so this [common interest agreement] is likely not worth the paper it is written on,” Horner said in an email to The Daily Signal.If this purported but facially abusive attempt at a common interest agreement is upheld as a legitimate shield, then AGs [attorneys general] and other public officials covered by public records acts can get around that by exempting themselves from laws the people’s elected representatives chose to cover them under—for fear of abuse of office, of which, I suggest, this current abuse is perfectly illustrative. It will mean that they can create privilege for what are otherwise public records, even when shared with ideological activists and donors, so long as everyone who wants to keep their scheming secret agrees in advance.Energy and Environment Legal Institute, based in Washington, D.C., describes itself as devoted to “strategic litigation,” “policy research,” and public education.”

Free Market Environmental Law Clinic, based in Virginia, describes its mission as “to provide a counterweight to the litigious environmental movement that fosters an economically destructive regulatory regime in the United States.”

The two organizations frequently collaborate on litigation involving energy and environmental questions.

In a new development, Energy and Environment Legal Institute obtained a copy of the common interest agreement in response to litigation involving the District of Columbia.

Mandelbaum said he wasn’t sure how this revelation will affect his case against Kilmartin.

“What remains unchanged is that Rhode Island law requires the attorney general there to release public records, regardless of what other states, or districts do,” he told The Daily Signal.

In a March 29 press release from Schneiderman’s office in New York, Rhode Island’s Kilmartin is quoted as saying:Washington is mired by political gridlock. We cannot sit back and watch the dysfunction while nothing gets done, or worse, Washington rolls back the progress we have made in the recent past to address the issue of climate change. If Washington is not going to step up and recognize the crisis and find meaningful solutions, then it will be up to the states to do so. As a state that will incur significant negative impacts from global climate change, including sea-level rise and increased flooding, Rhode Island is committed to continuing the fight for common-sense regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and other large emitters.‘Horrible Return on Investment’
Contrary to what the Democrat attorney general has said publicly, the real danger to Rhode Island comes not from climate change, but from government policies in the form of renewable energy mandates, Mike Stenhouse, CEO of the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity, told The Daily Signal.

The center, a free-market think tank associated with the State Policy Network, recently published a report that details the impact that current and pending renewable energy mandates could have on the Ocean State’s economy.

“What our report says is that if we make this conversion over to renewable energy it will cost our state hundreds of millions of dollars, eliminate thousands of jobs, and drive up electricity rates,” Stenhouse said.

Rhode Island already has a “relatively low carbon footprint,” he said, since 98 percent of its energy production is based on natural gas production.

“We are not going to get much of a reduction in our carbon footprint since we are already relatively efficient with natural gas,” Stenhouse said. “This would just be a horrible return on investment.”

The Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity is not part of the lawsuit against the attorney general, but did recruit a local lawyer to assist in filing the suit and has called on Kilmartin to disclose the requested information.

“It is clear that this is yet another means for which climate change deniers, big oil, and those they convince to do their bidding for them, are trying to forestall a legal and legitimate inquiry [by the 17 attorneys general],” Kilmartin spokeswoman Amy Kempe said in response to an inquiry about the lawsuit from The Daily Signal, adding:This politically motivated filing will not stop the Office of the Attorney General from seeking the truth and does not dissuade the attorney general’s commitment to protect the environment or to investigate and hold accountable our biggest corporate polluters who try to buy and bully their way out of their responsibility.‘Religion of Climate Change’
By working in collusion with environmental groups to silence those who are opposed to the “global warming policy agenda,” Stenhouse argues, Kilmartin and other top Rhode Island officials are doing a disservice to the public and its constitutional right to dissent under the First Amendment.

“Three of our top political figures are all part of this national effort built around the religion of climate change,” he said. “They are clearly not thinking about what’s best for the people of Rhode Island.”

Besides Kilmartin, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, also a Democrat, have pushed the global warming policy agenda, Stenhouse said.

Whitehouse called for a RICO investigation of scientists and researchers who question the theory of man-made global warming, while Raimondo joined 17 other Democrat governors in signing onto a Governor’s Accord for a New Energy Future.

Kilmartin, who must respond to the lawsuit by Aug. 22, has the option of moving for it to be dismissed.

Energy and Environment Legal Institute and Free Market Environmental Law Clinic also filed open records lawsuits against the attorneys general of New York and Vermont.

“We are pressing ahead on a number of fronts with open records laws to open as many doors as possible,” Mandelbaum said.

The New York lawsuit seeks records that relate to Schneiderman’s “efforts to use his powers as the state’s chief legal officer to investigate and even prosecute those who dissent from the ‘climate’ political agenda,” the legal institute said.

The lawsuit against Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell seeks records related to his office’s “ongoing investigation into those who dissent from green activists’ preferred views on climate change and the ‘climate’ political agenda.”
Kevin Mooney (@KevinMooneyDC) is an investigative reporter for Heritage Foundation's The Daily Signal.

Tags: Secret Deal, challenged in court, state attorney generals, prosecute, climate change deniers, AGs Kevin Mooney, The Daily Signal To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 9:13 AM - Post Link


Post a Comment

<< Home

national debt
Don't miss anything!
Subscribe to the
ARRA News Service
It's FREE & No Ads!

You Receive One Email Each Morning
With Prior Days Articles / Toons / More

Also, Join us at:

Recent Posts:
Personal Tweets by the editor:
Dr. Bill - OzarkGuru
Married 48yr #Conservative #Constitution #NRALife #GunRights #USAF 22yr #military #veteran #Christian #CCOT #ProLife #TEAParty #GOP #TCOT #SGP #schoolchoice

Action Links!
Arkansas State Senators
AR State Representatives
Arkansas Governor Office
Arkansas Attorney General
Bankrupting America
US House of Representatives
US Senators
Family Research Council
Sunshine Review

Facebook Accts - Dr. Bill Smith
ARRA News Service
Arkansans Against Big Government
Alley-White Am. Legion #52
Baxter County Republicans, AR
Catholics & Protestants United Against Discrimination
End Taxpayer Funding of NPR
Overturn Roe V. Wade
Prolife Soldiers
Project Wildfire
Republican Liberty Caucus of Arkansas
The Gold Standard
Twin Lakes Republican Women
US Atty Gen Loretta Lynch, aka Eric Holder, Must Go
Veterans for Sarah Palin
Why Vote for Hillary (Satire)
FB Groups:
Arkansas For Sarah Palin
Arkansas Conservative Caucus
Arkansas County Tea Party
Arkansans' Discussion Group on National Issues
Blogs for Borders
Conservative Solutions
Conservative Voices
Defend Marriage -- Arkansas
FairTax Nation
Arkansas for FairTax
Friends of the TEA Party in Arkansas
Freedom Roundtable
Let's Mine AR Lignite NOW!
Personhood Initiative
Pro-Life Rocks - Arkansas
Republican Network
Republican Liberty Caucus of AR
Reject the U.N.


Links to ARRA News
A Patriotic Nurse
Agora Associates
a12iggymom's Blog
America, You Asked For It!
Americans for a Free Republic
America's Best Choice
America's Whatchtower
An Ol’ Broad’s Ramblings
AR Republican Assembly
ARRA Twitter
As A Matter of Fact
As The Crackerhead Crumbles
Baaad Media!
Baxter Co. GOP Assembly
Baxter County Republicans
Benton Co. GOP Assembly
Black & Right
Blogs For Borders
Blogs for Palin
Blow the Trumpet Ministry
Boot Berryism
Cap'n Bob & the Damsel
Chicago Ray Report
Chuck Baldwin - links
Citizen Pamphleteer
Common Cents
Conservative Hideout
Conservative Observer AZ
Conservative Voices
Conway Real Deal
Defeat Obama's Agenda
Diana's Corner
eGOP News
Florida Pundit
Franklin Online Outreach
Free Zone Media Center
For God and Liberty
Garland County Republicans
Greater Fitchburg For Life
Guns and Religion
Lasting Liberty Blog
Liberal Isn't Amy
Liberty's Lifeline
Maggie's Notebook
Marathon Pundit
Monkey in the Middle
NASA Satellites
No Runny Eggs
Okie Campaigns
Our Voices Arkansas
Patriot's Corner
Publius Forum
Randy's Roundtable
Real Debate Wisconsin
Religion and Morality
Right on Issues that Matter
Right Reason
Rocking on the Right Side
Saber Point
Saline Watchdog
Secure Arkansas
Sentry Journal
Stop Obama Satire & Cartoons
The Arkansas Patriot
The Audacity of Logic
The Blue Eye View
The Bobo Files
The Born Again Americans
TEA Party Cartoons
The Conservative Citizen
The Foxhole | Unapologetic Patriot
The Liberty Republican
The Lid
The Looking Spoon
The Maritime Sentry
The O Word
The Path to Tyranny Blog
The Real Polichick
Truth About Obamacare
Twitter @ARRA
Warning Signs
Women's Prayer & Action

Editor's Managed Twitter Accounts
Twitter Dr. Bill Smith @arra
Twitter Arkansas @GOPNetwork
Twitter @BootBerryism
Twitter @SovereignAllies
Twitter @FairTaxNation

Editor's Recommended Orgs
American Committment
American Enterprise Institute
American Family Business Institute
Americans for Limited Government
Americans for Prosperity
Americans for Tax Reform
American Security Council Fdn
AR Faith & Ethics Council
Arkansas Policy Foundation
Ayn Rand Institute
Bill of Rights Institute
Campaign for Working Families
Center for Individual Freedom
Center for Immigration Studies
Center for Just Society
Center for Freedom & Prosperity
Citizens Against Gov't Waste
Citizens in Charge Foundstion
Coalition for the Future American Worker
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Concerned Veterans for America
Concerned Women for America
Curtis Coleman Institute for Constitutional Policy
Declaration of Am. Renewal
Eagle Forum
Family Research Council
Family Security Matters
Franklin Center for Gov't & Public Integrity
Gingrich Productions
Global Incident Map
Great Americans
Gold Standard 2012 Project
Gun Owners of America (GOA)
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Institute For Justice
Institute for Truth in Accounting
Judicial Watch
Less Government
Media Reseach Center
National Center for Policy Analysis
National Right To Work Foundation
National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Rifle Association (NRA-ILA)
News Busters
O'Bluejacket's Patriotic Flicks
Open Secrets
Presidential Prayer Team
Religious Freedom Coalition
Renew America
Ron Paul Institute
State Policy Network
Tax Foundation
Tax Policy Center
The Club for Growth
The Federalist Today
The Gold Standard Now
The Heritage Foundation
The Leadership Institute
Union Facts

Blogs For Borders

Reject the United Nations

Adopt Our Troops in Prayer

Thousands of Deadly Islamic Terror Attacks Since 9/11

FairTax Nation on FaceBook
Friends of Israel
Blog Feeds
Syndicated - Get the ARRA News Service feed Syndicated!
ARRA Blog Feed

Add to Google Reader or Homepage

Add to netvibes

Add to Bitty Brouser

Add to The Free Dictionary

Powered by Blogger

Politics Blogs
Politics blog

  • How To Exchange Links!
  • Comments by contributing authors or other sources do not necessarily reflect the position the editor, other contributing authors, sources, readers, or commenters. No contributors, or editors are paid for articles, images, cartoons, etc. While having reported on and promoting the beliefs associated with the ARRA, this blog/site is not controlled by nor funded by the ARRA. This site/blog does not advertise for money or services nor does it solicit funding for its support.
  • Fair Use: This site/blog may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material as provided for in section Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Per said section, the material on this site/blog is distributed without profit to readers to view for the expressed purpose of viewing the included information for research, educational, or satirical purposes. Any person/entity seeking to use copyrighted material shared on this site/blog for purposes that go beyond "fair use," must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
  • © 2006 - 2016 ARRA News Service
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.