Climate Litigation Watch, a project of the public interest law firm Government Accountability & Oversight, P.C., has released new television ads running in five states, informing Marylanders, New Mexicans, Oregonians, Pennsylvanians and Virginians of recently unearthed details of their states’ attorneys general involvement in a national scheme to place privately funded special prosecutors in state AG offices to pursue issues of concern to the donor.
Each ad shows specific records obtained from each state, and cites to troubling aspects of the unprecedented arrangement, from New Mexico’s promise to use the privately funded prosecutors “to identify ‘pressure points’ on which litigation can be used to most effectively influence policy” on matters of concern to the donor — while the parties agreed to not draw media attention to their deal — to the apparent violations of state law in Oregon and Virginia.
By statute, these “Special Assistant Attorneys General” have the same authority as the AG; by agreement, they are expressly to pursue an ideological agenda, using the state’s top law enforcement office in a mercenary fashion, as a tool to investigate individuals, businesses and organizations who oppose that agenda.
The ads are based on a recent report, “Law Enforcement for Hire”, which cites to hundreds of source documents, many revealed for the first time and all obtained after more than two years of investigation, document requests and, in numerous cases, litigation. Citing to key records from each AG’s office, the exposés lay out the tie-ups between a “Center” funded by New York billionaire activist Michael Bloomberg, and various state AGs across the country. Each AG specifically requested the outside group provide attorney salaries and benefits, as well as other “services that may be available to your offices on individual matters”, including still more attorneys, and public relations advocacy, to “advance progressive…legal positions” on specific issues.
These arrangements cry out for legislative oversight of how law enforcement came to be used in this way, and how AGs could claim they had no relevant statutory professional responsibility limitations.
The ads can be seen on YouTube or ClimateLitigationWatch.org
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You know who else has a lot of spare money? The Kochs and Donald Trump.