Which Senators Get Big Bucks from Fossil Fuel Interests?
U.S. Senate Contributions from Energy & Natural Resources, Agribusiness, and Construction 2004–2016
As the U.S. Senate prepares to vote on the confirmation of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, President Donald J. Trump’s nominee to serve as Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), this fact sheet provides campaign contribution data for all current senators from three sectors that are often at odds with the EPA: Energy and Natural Resources, Agribusiness, and Construction. The data span two full Senate election cycles, from 2004 to 2016. During the period, Republicans received $122.6 million dollars in campaign contributions from these sectors, or 72.7
percent of the total. Democrats received $46 million, or 27.3 percent of the total.1
Each of the top ten recipients is a Republican, as are seventeen of the top twenty recipients. The top five are Ted Cruz (R‐Tex.), Mitch McConnell (R‐Ky.), John Cornyn (R‐Tex.), Marco Rubio (R‐Fla.), and Richard Burr (R‐N.C.). The highest ranked Democrat is Robert Menendez (D‐N.J.), at 11, largely on the strength of contributions from the Construction sector. Menendez ranks 2nd for contributions from Construction and only 41st for contributions from both Agribusiness and Energy and Natural Resources. After Menendez, the next Democrat is Charles Schumer (D‐N.Y.) at 19. Contributions for 2016 are even more starkly partisan than those for 2004 to 2016. Thirty‐three million dollars, or 81.1 percent of the total, went to Republicans, while $7.7 million or 18.9 percent went to Democrats. The top ten recipients are all Republicans, as are eighteen of the top twenty recipients. The top five are Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rob Portman (R‐Ohio), Lisa Murkowski (RAlaska), and Richard Burr (R-NC).