Emails Reveal Role Michael Bloomberg’s Climate Crusaders Are Playing In Maryland’s AG Office

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From The Daily Caller

Chris White Tech Reporter

September 09, 2019 9:57 PM ET

  • Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s legal fellows are likely too closely connected to the billionaire’s climate change crusading group, new emails show.
  • Analyst Chris Horner tells the Daily Caller News Foundation that the emails reveal how Maryland is “outsourcing” law enforcement activities to “activist donors.”
  • The emails apparently contradict what the Bloomberg-financed climate group has said in the past about the legal fellows it places in state attorneys general offices.

A climate attorney inside Maryland’s attorney general’s office appears to be working at the direction of a group connected to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, according to documents published recently by a watchdog group.

The special assistant attorney move to seek guidance contracts claims from the billionaire-financed group that such attorneys are loyal only to the states where they are placed. The so-called SAAGs are being placed in state AG offices around the country by a group that received $6 million from Bloomberg in 2018.

“I’m considering moving from my current environmental-focused position to the energy position that the Maryland AG’s Office has open, ” SAAG John Howard said in an email to David Haynes, director of the State Environmental and Energy Impact Center, which works to plant attorneys in various AG offices.

The memo was published Sept. 3 by Energy Policy Advocates (EPA), a non-profit group founded in Washington state. (RELATED: One Of The Lawyers Targeting Oil Companies Worked In Bloomberg’s Office)

“Would you have a few minutes this afternoon to call me? I want to get a better sense than I currently have about what the Center envisions for these positions,” Howard added in the email, which is dated March, 13 2019. Haynes responded: “I’d be happy to chat with you about this. Could we talk tomorrow.”

Howard has been working at Maryland’s AG office since March 2018.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (C) speaks at a news conference with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (R) and other U.S. State Attorney's General to announce a state-based effort to combat climate change in the Manhattan borough of New York City, March 29, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar.
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (C) speaks at a news conference with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (R) and other U.S. State Attorney’s General to announce a state-based effort to combat climate change in the Manhattan borough of New York City, March 29, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar.

Bloomberg’s grant went to the SEEI, which is designed to escalate attacks against President Donald Trump’s regulatory rollbacks. The Daily Caller News Foundation reported in February that Illinois, Maryland, and other states involved in the program hired attorneys with ties to the billionaire.

The exchange between Howard and Haynes appears to contradict SEEIC’s past claims that such fellows receive orders exclusively from their respective attorney general. The SEEIC operates out of the New York University of Law, media reports show.

The group’s website states: “NYU pays the salaries of the law fellows, but the fellows’ sole duty of loyalty is to the attorney general in whose office he or she serves. All work performed by the fellows is entirely identified and managed by their respective AG offices.”

Analysts argue Howard knew what was expected of him before he reached out.

“This scheme represents a dangerous outsourcing of law enforcement to an activist donor — and further undermines the AGs’ and Bloomberg Center’s insistence that these are simply more bodies,” Chris Horner, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, told the DCNF.

Horner is on the board of directors at the Government Accountability & Oversight, which played a role in  releasing the emails.

Howard, Haynes, and Maryland AG Brian Frosh have not responded to the DCNF’s request for comment about the nature of the program. Media reports have also raised questions about SEEI’s role in financing state attorneys general attempts to sue oil companies for supposedly contributing to climate change.

Gavin McCabe, a lawyer connected to Bloomberg Philanthropies, for instance, signed an amicus brief in 2018 supporting New York City’s yearlong climate lawsuit against Exxon and Chevron. Bloomberg founded Bloomberg Philanthropies in 2017 to provide AG offices with attorneys to help push green energy.

McCabe is one of at least eight attorneys hired by attorneys general across the country to work on environmental litigation.

McCabe’s involvement suggests Bloomberg’s money is playing a role in the anti-Exxon campaign. He made himself a part of the lawsuit demanding energy companies compensate the city for the alleged damages from global warming. U.S. District Judge John Keenan dismissed the case in July after months of arguments.

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September 10, 2019 10:13 am

Now, Michael Bloomberg is planting his environmental acolytes in State Attorney Generals office. Something smells fishy.

Michael Bloomberg and His Magical Natural Gas Reversal

Once upon a time(long ago all the way back to 2015), former New York City Major Michael Bloomberg gave an Interview to the Wall Street Journal. The subsequent headline read: “Bloomberg Criticizes New York Fracking Ban.” In fact, Bloomberg gave $30 million in that year to the Sierra Club with one proviso, they could not use any of that money for its “anti-fossil fuel campaign.”

Before that, Bloomberg and the grandfather of fracking George Mitchell wrote a Washington Post Op-Ed entitled: “Fracking is too important to foul up.” Since 2012, Bloomberg has been advocating fracking and natural gas. Bloomberg was essential to NYC converting much of city from Number 6 Oil to natural gas, thereby reducing the City’s greenhouse gas emissions, significantly

Fast forward to today, Mr. Bloomberg just announced that is $500 million to the Sierra Club and Earth Justice to launch a new “Beyond Carbon” campaign, that is no natural gas either. We still don’t know why Bloomberg changed his mind on Natural Gas.
F hz
I wrote the following piece for I Spark Internet Magazine.

Reply to  Stephen Heins
September 10, 2019 10:58 am

Stephen Heins…. I read on this site that george soros gave ER money (somebody hacks ER emails), so maybe George bloomberg are hoping to cash in on the new green money? Or they have both realised that to bring down society is to scare people in to “carbon” is bad??

Reply to  Sunny
September 10, 2019 11:56 am

“NYU pays the salaries of the law fellows, but the fellows’ sole duty of loyalty is to the attorney general in whose office he or she serves.”

what could be a more blatant lie? Your primary loyality is to the guy who writes your paycheck. When has that ever not been the case?

Bryan A
Reply to  Greg
September 10, 2019 12:15 pm

If Mr. Bloomberg avails himself on the usage of Fossil Fuels for his travels and flights, I would consider filing suit against him for perpetuating the very problem he claims to be fighting.

Reply to  Greg
September 10, 2019 11:50 pm

An old Scottish saying:
He who pays the Piper calls the tune.

September 10, 2019 10:18 am

This is a guess, but all this green talk, is a dirty trick to get oil money? If they want exxon to pay for climate change does that mean all the money will go to individual people? As its us simple people who get wet, hot or blown on during “climate change”…. I will bet that the money will be spent to line the pockets of politicians and other green groups. Remember its been over 30 years of the “world is ending” and the ipcc and u.n has done NOTHING to stop climate change, they have offered no solutions or factual ideas..

Reply to  Sunny
September 10, 2019 10:54 am

It’s a dirty trick to support many politically motivated policy goals that are otherwise unsupportable. One of those policy goals is to extort money from countries and corporations in the name of fixing the climate. Another is to replace free market capitalism with centralized control, starting with the control of energy. Another is to appease radical environmental groups that have bought into the lies because they help their cause. Another is because Trump is on the correct side of the science and the left doesn’t want to admit that anything Trump supports has merit.

By doing nothing, the UN is doing all it can to stop climate change, which is nothing at all because there’s nothing to stop. Sadly, it seems that they know this which leads me to believe that malfeasance is more relevant to the origin of the broken science, rather than incompetence, although both contribute.

Curious George
Reply to  Sunny
September 10, 2019 11:04 am

Now I feel entitled to some of .. most of Bloomberg’s money.

Bryan A
Reply to  Curious George
September 10, 2019 12:19 pm

Sue him for contributing to Climate Change by utilizing Fossil Fuels

September 10, 2019 10:44 am

Donating funds with caveats (not to be spent on ____ ) is an economic ruse. Money is fungible in that it can be transferred easily and spent on anything. Stating that the Sierra Club cannot spend any of the $30m on a “anti-fossil fuel campaign” merely frees up the program that will receive the money to transfer $30m of unrestricted funds from its existing accounts to the “anti-fossil fuel campaign.”
The Sierra club can truthfully state it has not used any of the newly donated funds as proscribed, but instantly those proscribed efforts can be funded with amounts equal to the new funds.

Reply to  Rocketscientist
September 11, 2019 8:17 am

Reminds me of federal money to Planned Parenthood.

Brian Valentine
September 10, 2019 11:01 am

Fossil fuel mining and processing – and the controlled use of fire – have been the greatest advance in civilization within the last 10,000 years.

Sane adults are compelled to prevent these people from harming themselves, it is so sad.

Joel O'Bryan
September 10, 2019 11:09 am

Ethics laws are not just about actual ethics violations. Ethics laws and guidelines are also fundamentally about “appearances” that could undermine the public’s perception of integrity and trust. As such violating the even the appearance standards of ethics laws is as serious as an actual violation of ethics.

Thus this AG for Hire scheme is exactly such a violation of ethics standards merely its creation of an appearance of impropriety.

Furthermore, it is almost certainly a violation of the Separation of Powers doctrine found in every state’s Constitution. All 50 states per the US Constitution must have democratic form of government, which in our system means Separation of powers between a co-equal Legislative Branch and an Executive branch with an independent Judiciary as a 3rd co-equal.
The Legislative branch in all 50 states, like the US Congress at the Federal level, has sole power of the purse to fund government operations. Power of the purse affords the Legislative branch a means of checks and balances and oversight as the People’s control on the executive branch.

Having a privately paid Assistant AG sitting in the State AG’s office (and probably carrying a Maryland State LE badge as well, like any other AG, AAG, or deputy AG) and working under the official Seal of the AG’s Office, and as an duly sworn State’s officer in the state’s courts, the Legislative Branch is not afforded its role of oversight in funding this position and accountability. This privately-paid position acting as an official of the State is a clear separation of powers violation. That means that any actions or work or work contribution provided from the private position would be challenge-able in the courts as unconstitutional by a defendant.

This also means the US DOJ and US AG (the US DOJ’s Civil Rights enforcement division) has clear authority to investigate and subpoena the State AG’s records to ensure a State is following its Democratic responsibilities under the US Constitution.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 10, 2019 12:32 pm

I agree, and will further ask,
How is private funding of AAGs not the same as private funding of a militia or Special Police Task force?
Would the general public be in favor of private police forces with the imprimatur of legitimate public forces?

If Bloomberg actually wanted to do the public good as he states, then he could simply donate the funds to the various states to hire their own attorneys.

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Rocketscientist
September 10, 2019 5:04 pm

RS, When you’re talking about police forces, they are examples of non-public funded Police Agencies.

The Union Pacific Special Agent police force is one.

These guys date back to the 1800’s era of Pinkerton Detectives who rode the trains and provided a police and crime control functions. They’ve since been brought under the LE certification guidelines and control of State LE agencies.
So they are certified LE officers in the State’s in which they are stationed, and work in conjunction both with State, and District Prosecutors and with Federal Prosecutors. They key here when Due Process considerations come into play, like getting Arrest Warrants, Search Warrants, pursuing criminals they work with the State LE and Federal Attorney’s offices, the US Marshall service and the FBI if it is interstate crimes. They cannot prosecute, they cannot issue subpoenas, search warrants on their own. So don’t get too hung up on “privately funded” police as long as they are supervised by the State or the Feds in their duties. Also most large Private universities also have police department to provide dedicated services to their campuses. Again, the University police are State certified to get a badge and carry a gun. And they work with city and state LE and public prosecutors to pursue crimes.

The problem in this AG for Hire scheme is a Assistant AG has subpoena power, and can represent the State in Judicial proceedings as a sworn officer of the Court. And their are huge conflict of interest considerations now with this privately funded AAG and weaponizing state prosecutorial powers for political partisanship should get the US DOJ Civil Right Division’s attention.

It’s just bad all the way around. It looks bad. And even California’s AG’s have had the sense enough to stay away from Bloomberg’s little unethical scheme. Unfortunately, other Democrat AG’s have not that good sense.

HD Hoese
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 10, 2019 1:04 pm

“Ethics laws are not just about actual ethics violations. Ethics laws and guidelines are also fundamentally about “appearances” that could undermine the public’s perception of integrity and trust. As such violating the even the appearance standards of ethics laws is as serious as an actual violation of ethics.”

Very true, ‘scientific’ organizations are pushing ethics and communication, not scientific fidelity. Sigma Xi, maybe others, are using ethics (new committee) to improve public trust. Sigma Xi has a member blog, getting interesting pushback, questions, some difficulty keeping it focused. Language always outs.

September 10, 2019 11:43 am

Polish Coast Guard Seize Greenpeace Ship!

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  john
September 10, 2019 1:48 pm

The Poles taking a leaf out of Putin’s manual. Now lock them up for a few cold nights in unheated cells.

September 10, 2019 11:44 am

Now there’s real collusion. Sad fact that the Marxist/Socialists/Progressives are working their takeover from the inside. Deep state? You bet. The only way to stop it is at the ballot box.

Joel Snider
Reply to  markl
September 10, 2019 12:09 pm

Assuming they don’t corrupt that too. When current Oregon governor was AG, she famously claimed that the reason she didn’t destroy extra empty ballots on election night was – “The destruction and protection of ballots are contradictory orders’, and that ‘we may need them later’.

Bad enough – but when it came to public light and before the court, one of the Democrat-appointed judges BOUGHT that as legitimate.

Reply to  Joel Snider
September 11, 2019 10:16 am

You’re forgetting that she is ‘bisexual’, so it’s O.K. to do whatever she did, or what she will do, or how she will do it.

(Her “staff”, trying to take control of the independent Oregon Public Records Advocate, is just a misunderstanding; her lead lawyer was just a little over exuberant and was not following her lead … so it’s O.K. to do whatever she did, or what she will do, or how she will do it.)

September 10, 2019 12:14 pm

Public servants get paid by the public. Bloomberg is purchasing “color of authority.”

September 10, 2019 12:40 pm

I knew AGs were in office to reach for other offices but until now I did not realize how they were misusing public offices as part of the process. Shame on you. I always learn more about how the system really works from over reach Dems.

September 10, 2019 12:54 pm

The question which is most important is will the national news channels report on this? If not, why not? Also why are factual scientists not gathering together and informing the public of the lies of carbon being the devil? Why must we hide away on blogs or website???

Mark Broderick
Reply to  Sunny
September 10, 2019 2:01 pm

Follow the money !

Tom Abbott
September 10, 2019 2:39 pm

Buying Assistant AGs is undermining the Democratic process.

Attorneys General of the States that accept this outside money ought to be removed from Office.

Where’s the Department of Justice? Where’s the Justice? What about the little guys who can’t afford to buy themselves a personal Assistant AG?

September 10, 2019 4:35 pm

Government for sale. Liberalism at it’s finest.

September 10, 2019 7:29 pm

It’s not a crusade… Perhaps not the first, but the later iterations were an adventure.

September 10, 2019 7:32 pm

Bloomberg and his fellow adventurists are seeking social justice where justice, science, democracy, etc. are obstacles to overcome.

nw sage
September 10, 2019 7:57 pm

It seems to be a common practice for activists, such as climate change folks, to buy there way in to the AG offices in several states. It happened in Washington State where, as AG, the current Governor was paid large contracts to ‘look out’ for the climate interests and apparently the practice is continuing. The Governor is still collecting non-public funds for his daily duties. I wonder which master is paying his wage today!

September 12, 2019 9:40 pm

The planted lawyers are in a conflict and they know it . The public is being duped when lobbyists
infiltrate government.
It is shocking the governments would ever let this happen . Where do you draw the line .
Who ever authorized this breach of trust should be fired and charged for essentially taking graft .

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