President Donald Trump’s suggestion that fossil fuel corporations like Exxon would be willing to give him large campaign contributions in exchange for federal government drilling permits follows a long love affair between the president and the company.
President Trump and Exxon can deny their corrupt relationship all they want, but facts are facts: public lands and their users are worse off because President Trump has allowed corporations like Exxon to exploit our natural heritage with impunity,” said Jayson O’Neill, director of the Western Values Project.
As recently as April, Exxon’s CEO met with the president to personally petition for relief from the economic crisis that resulted from the administration’s mishandling of the ongoing public health emergency. Some of the corporation’s public lands leases were awarded royalty rate cuts to 0.5%, despite Exxon having to pay nearly $1 million in penalties for dodging natural resource royalties just last year.
At the beginning of the administration, Exxon contributed $500,000 to Trump’s inauguration. Not long after that contribution, President Trump illegally cut land out of Bears Ears National Monument where the company owns “operating rights”.
Here is a rundown of how the Trump administration has already helped fossil fuel corporations reap billions of profits in recent years prior to the billions in taxpayer-funded bailouts awarded to the sector during the economic crisis:
Big Oil hasn’t already gotten billions in subsidies, tax breaks and other benefits by accident. They’ve pulled every lever to exert their special interest influence. Here are a few examples: