Recent advertisement against President Bush may be illegal in as many as 41 states

WASHINGTON, DC -- Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Chairman of the Environment & Public Works Committee in a speech on the Senate floor today raised serious concerns regarding a recent advertisement funded by and the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) that attacks President Bush regarding the administration’s mercury emissions policy. The advertisement, which ran in the New York Times and other newspapers across the nation asks for contributions and falsely claims that President Bush is trying to weaken controls on mercury pollution from power plants.

Inhofe believes that the false claim, combined with the solicitation request for tax-deductible contributions, violates state laws in as many as 41 states regarding soliciting contributions by using false advertising, and has officially requested justice officials in the State of Oklahoma and the Better Business Bureau to investigate this matter.

“We take this very seriously in Oklahoma, and at least 40 other states have just as strict statutes against soliciting contributions by misleading advertising. Arguably this ad by NRDC may be unlawful in as many as forty other states that also have charitable solicitation statutes. This advertisement explicitly states that the President is weakening mercury controls - which is factually untrue -- while they are trying to swindle contributions from people all across the country that may see this advertisement. I don=t know what else this ad represents but specifically NRDC, which describes itself as a charitable organization on its website, soliciting contributions by making knowingly false statements to cheat people out of contributions,” Senator Inhofe stated.

In addition, Inhofe will continue the investigation started during a March 3rd hearing of the Environment and Public Works Committee regarding the process by which Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grants are distributed.

“The most shocking part of all of this is not even that NRDC is running a completely false ad, or that NRDC is running a completely false ad simply to fleece people for contributions. The most shocking part is that the American taxpayer subsidizes the NRDC hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to conduct this type of activity,” Senator Inhofe said.