The coal industry lobbying outfit now mired in a forgery scandal is planning to plant questioners at “town hall meetings” and “lawmakers’ offices,” Politico reports. The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), despite the revelation it was responsible for forged “grassroots” letters to members of the House of Representatives attacking the American Clean Energy and Security Act, is pressing forward with an aggressive Astroturfing campaign going after U.S. Senators, who are now considering the legislation:
The coalition also plans to deploy teams to question senators at town hall meetings, advertise at state fairs and other summer events and visit lawmakers’ offices back home.
ACCCE’s campaign, representing coal interests from General Electric to Peabody Energy, requires the efforts of multiple Astroturfing companies, including primary contractor Hawthorn Group, as well as known fraud shop Bonner & Associates, and marketing firm R & R Partners.
The “ACCCE Army” will be joining right-wing Astroturf efforts funded by the oil and gas industry to disrupt Congressional town hall meetings across the nation. Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks, both bankrolled by oil and gas giant Koch Industries, are orchestrating the “tea party protests” and have hired dozens of field staff to spread misinformation about clean energy and health care reform. Yesterday, FreedomWorks released its “August Action Recess Packet” for disrupting town hall meetings:
It is essential that we don’t let the pressure up. While Senators and Representatives are home for their August recess they need to hear from you, regardless of party. Many hold town hall meetings that are open to the public, check our map to see if there is one nearby and take our questions to ask them on the record whether they can risk losing even more jobs under Cap and Trade or if they plan on raising taxes for government run health care. In addition to attending town hall meetings, please call and visit district offices asking the same questions.
As Media Matters Action explains, the FreedomWorks energy talking points are just as fraudulent as ACCCE’s “clean coal” campaign.
Media Matters has more on the oil and coal interests behind Americans for Prosperity, FreedomWork, and American Solutions for Winning the Future.