2012 GOP presidential contender Newt Gingrich executed a high-profile flip-flop on cap and trade, saying in 2007 that “mandatory carbon caps combined with a trading system” were something he “would strongly support,” before disavowing that position this year. “I never favored cap and trade,” he claimed during a Fox News interview earlier this month.
It turns out that this move was more than politically convenient for Gingrich. As the Washington Post noted today, Gingrich’s climate flip-flop was also quite lucrative, with millions of oil dollars pouring into his now defunct energy non-profit after he announced it:
Within weeks, the money began pouring in from major U.S. energy firms, which eventually contributed more than $2 million to American Solutions’ pro-drilling and anti-cap-and-trade campaign for the next two years, according to a review of disclosure reports and other records by The Washington Post.
The top contributors included Peabody Energy of St. Louis, which gave $825,000, and Devon Energy of Oklahoma City, which contributed $500,000.
Gingrich, of course, has been quote cozy with corporate interests in the last few years, making and taking millions from various corporations for work in a variety of areas. And those corporations have seen their investment pay off, as Gingrich has peddled his influence to secure earmarks and push for deregulation. His cap and trade flip-flop is simply part of a larger pattern of Gingrich saying what he needs to say to keep corporate dollars flowing.