Conor Lamb Is a Centrist in Sheep’s Clothing

Last weekend, Congressman Conor Lamb, a frontline Democrat from Pennsylvania who is running for the Senate in 2022, pledged to support carbon-free energy payments. Lamb officially entered the race to replace retired Republican Senator Pat Toomey in August in one of the most controversial contests in next year’s midterm elections.

During his tenure in Congress, Lamb has repeatedly struggled against his own party in support of a number of conservative positions, including anti-climate policies. But since the beginning of his Senate campaign, Lamb has tried to rename himself a mainstream Democrat who advocates his party’s political priorities – while distancing himself from his actual election record and his history in the House of Representatives.

In 2018, Lamb was one of 13 Democrats who poll for an amendment to repeal an Obama-era clean water regime known as the Waters of the United States, and one of seven to oppose an amendment that would reduce research and development funding for fossil fuels. He chosen twice for GOP resolutions against the introduction of CO2 taxes.

Most notably, Lamb is one of the group of Democrats in the House of Representatives who are calling for the bipartisan infrastructure bill to be passed without the $ 3.5 trillion reconciliation package, undermining the core of President Joe Biden’s climate and social security agenda. While the progressive Democrats in the House of Representatives “held the line” in late September to maintain the democratic agenda, Lamb urged his colleagues to approve the infrastructure bill. “Trump promised and never delivered,” he said tweeted. “We can deliver. I agree. ”

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Lamb made tens of thousands of dollars from the fossil fuel industry over the course of his political career. In the third quarter of fundraising in 2021, the first quarter of his campaign, Lamb received $ 12,100 from fossil fuel executives and $ 11,550 from fossil fuel lobbyists, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission. In the second quarter of the year before he officially announced his campaign, he received $ 4,900 from industry executives and $ 6,250 from industry lobbyists. During the 2018 and 2020 election cycles, Lamb raised over $ 30,000 in campaign funds, according to fossil fuel industry employees and PACs OpenSecrets, a group that pursues money in politics.

That summer, Lamb received two maximum campaign contributions from Stacy Schusterman, the heir and chair from Samson Energy, a fossil fuel company that owns nearly a dozen oil and gas wells in Wyoming. As The interception reported, Schusterman is the largest single Democratic Majority donor for Israel, the pro-Israel super-PAC that has spent millions prosecuting progressive candidates like Senator Bernie Sanders and Nina Turner. before sale In 2011, the Schusterman family owned and operated “one of the largest privately owned oil and gas exploration and extraction companies in the United States” with 4,000 wells nationwide. Lamb also received two maximum contributions from Toby Rice, CEO of EQT, the largest gas drilling company in the United States.

Lamb’s two main opponents, Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman, and State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta, have pledged not to accept donations from executives, lobbyists, or PACs associated with the fossil fuel industry. Fetterman is a leader in the crowded primary fundraising field, reporting having raised nearly $ 2.7 million in campaign contributions and $ 4.2 million in cash in the third quarter.

Fetterman and Kenyatta, both of whom support Medicare for All and the decriminalization of marijuana, run to Lamb’s left side. They support aspects of the Green New Deal, although Fetterman is still not on board with a fracking ban. Kenyatta, on the other hand, has spoken out in favor of a nationwide fracking ban.

Aside from his climate positions, Lamb has too joined Republicans voting against other democratic priorities like decriminalizing marijuana, ending the war in Iraq, and providing Covid-19 aid to undocumented immigrants. When Lamb first entered Congress, he voted with Trumps position about 68 percent of the time. But nowadays he is much more cautious when voting with his party. This year he has chosen with his Democrats about 99 percent of the time. It is unclear whether the new lamb will last beyond the campaign season.

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