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Who Takes Oil and Gas Money?

So, Jim Baca’s trying to paint a picture of the oil and gas industry and the Republican Party in New Mexico being in bed together:

The biggest contributor to the Republican party in New Mexico is the oil and gas industry. That is a fact. Now, John McCain says that he will rely on the Republican party for most of his fundraising for his presidential campaign. Ergo, the oil and gas industry will be largely funding his campaign, along with Lockheed Martin, Boeing and the rest of the military industrial complex.

First, let me say the obvious. I have no problem with the oil and gas industry. As I’ve pointed out more than once before, New Mexico would be in a pretty sorry state if it wasn’t for this industry. My guess is that a big part of Jim Baca’s problem is that he didn’t get much support from the oil and gas industry when he ran for Land Commissioner. I’ll go out on a limb and guess it has something to do that he likes to make them into a boogey man.

Now, the interesting part…

According to, the oil and gas industry made a little over $2 million in contributions to candidates in 2006. It’s worth noting that is SIGNIFICANTLY less than the $2.4 million spent by lawyers. Hmm, who do you think those trial lawyers gave their money to? But, I digress.

Taking a look at the list of recipients of oil and gas money yields a very interesting observation. Namely, that there are an awful lot of Democrats on that list receiving an awful ot of money. Just on the first page, you’ll find Governor Bill Richardson, Lt. Governor Diane Denish, Attorney General Gary King and the New Mexico Democratic Party.

Again, I’ve don’t have an problem with the oil and gas industry. In fact, as a small business owner, I recognize the important role they play in keeping my business growing. My problem is that until Jim Baca is ready to call the Governor, Lt. Governor, Attorney General and State Democratic Party to task, it is just going to come off as sour grapes.