State Of Denial: More Dirty Energy Policies Expected From Koch-Fueled Marco Rubio

After the State of the Union, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), will deliver the Republican response, where he will likely repackage many of the same dirty energy policies that lost spectacularly among voters in 2012.

Although Rubio was dubbed by TIME magazine a “new voice of the GOP,” the presidential hopeful sounds no different from the old party — particularly his positions on climate change and favoring Big Oil above all.

Just last week, Rubio claimed climate change is not a problem for his home state Florida, despite a devastating year of extreme weather. “I know people said there’s a significant scientific consensus on [human-caused climate change], but I’ve actually seen reasonable debate on that principle,” he said.

Not surprisingly, Rubio is a member of the Koch polluter caucus. He is one of five senators who received a perfect score from the Kochs’ Americans for Prosperity, and he received more of the petrochemical giant’s cash than any other Senate campaign in 2010, for a career total of $32,200. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Senator Rubio has received nearly $260,000 in dirty energy contributions from oil, gas, and coal, with his largest contribution coming from the Koch-linked group, Club for Growth.

But Rubio’s polluter backing comes at a cost. His record includes:

Voting against repealing Big Oil subsidies to fund clean energy projects and reduce the deficit.

— Voting against extending tax credits for renewable energy, at the same time he maintained oil industry tax breaks

— Signing a pledge to Americans for Prosperity that promises to “oppose any legislation relating to climate change that includes a net increase in government revenue.”

Voting against legislation aiding states harmed by the 2010 BP oil disaster. Rubio was the only senator from the Gulf Coast to do so, and one year later, he voted to expand coastal oil and gas exploration and issue faster drilling permits to oil companies.

Rubio has given no reason to expect anything less than a Big Oil agenda tonight.

Tiffany Germain, ThinkProgress War Room Senior Climate/Energy Researcher, contributed substantial research to this post.

11 Responses to State Of Denial: More Dirty Energy Policies Expected From Koch-Fueled Marco Rubio

  1. Anne says:

    His name should be Marco Pogo: “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” Or, uh, him.

  2. Thanks for keeping this crucial perspective in front of us, as MSM seems to only cover Rubio on ethnic stereotype issues.

  3. Zimzone says:

    Is this the Cuban boat boy or a Koch nut?

  4. Joan Savage says:

    Rubio is part of the GOP that is repositioning on immigration reform, following the big loss of Hispanic voters in the last election.

    Forbes picked up an a Zogby poll that showed Hispanic voters are increasingly concerned about climate change.

    Rubio may be the person that the GOP is counting on to bring back that Hispanic voting block, without losing too many dollars.

    Looks like he’s between the devil and the deep blue sea, even before hearing the State of the Union address.

  5. Joan Savage says:

    A donor dollar devil or a deepening Blue sea of votes

  6. BillD says:

    The GOP has two young immigrant Southern politicians–Rubio and Jandal. The both have reputations for being bright, charismatic and articulate. Unfortunately for the GOP, both are taking anti-science positions that we can only hope will be further out of the mainstream in 4 years. Besides climate change, both seem to be anti-evolution. I don’t know Rubio’s educational background, but it is not difficult to believe that he is basically ignorant on science. Bobby Jandal has an Ivy undergraduate biology degree, so I assume that he is knowledgeable about science but takes anti-science positions that appeal to right wing GOP supporters, especially those from Louisiana. Any, I hope that in 4 years, the GOP has either changed their positions on science or that Climate change becomes a bigger negative for the GOP than immigration was in the recent election.

  7. Ken Barrows says:

    Rubio and Jindal have reputations for being bright? Who says? They sure don’t come off that way, but politics does dull one’s mind.

  8. Mark Shapiro says:


  9. Dennis Tomlinson says:

    It’s a classic case of, “A Simple Desultory Philippic (Or How I Was Robert McNamara’d Into Submission)”

  10. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    What we really need is a good, old-fashioned, jeremiad.

  11. Joy Hughes says:

    Florida and Louisiana – the most vulnerable states.