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Amash targeted by environmental group

August 24, 2011

Yesterday MLive reported on a campaign by the Environmental Defense Action Fund (EDAF) to target Republican lawmakers who voted against new clean air rules.

The campaign is targeting several GOP Congressmen in Michigan, including 3rd Congressional Representative Justin Amash. The campaign is targeting these lawmakers with both billboard and radio ads.

The MLive article cites part of the radio ad narrative and a Media Release from EDAF, which states that the group is spending $300,000 on this campaign to target 8 Republican Congressmen from six different states.

The article states, “EDAF spokesman Keith Gaby said Amash and the other targeted congressmen were chosen because of previous votes and statements that indicate they may attempt to block the new clean air regulations.” However, the article does not source any of the statements or which votes that Rep. Amash made that they consider detrimental to clean air rules.

The EDAF webpage sites a Congressional vote in March that would have potentially cut EPA funding by $3 billion. The final vote in the House was actually on April 7 and the bill was HR 910. The actual legislation is problematic in that it guts some of the regulation on what are considered Greenhouse gases. Amash voted for the bill, which was introduced by Michigan Rep. Fred Upton. Anyone can follow the voting records of members of Congress at the site Vote Smart, including Rep. Amash’s voting record in his first year in DC.

What is disturbing about the MLive story is that it does not investigate any of the claims made by the EDAF ad campaign, nor does the reporter provide information about the actual voting record of Rep. Amash.

The MLive story also does not ask why the Environmental Defense Action Fund campaign only targets Republicans when 19 Democrats also voted for the HR 910. It is not enough to report that there is a campaign targeting Rep. Amash, the public deserves more information on the vote and what the EDAF has with political parties. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the EDAF gave more to Republicans during the 2010 election cycle. This kind of information is what the public needs in order to make an informed decision about the political process, something that MLive rarely does.

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