Elizabeth Warren Warns Exxon: 'You Picked A Fight with the Wrong State'

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Elizabeth Warren Warns Exxon: 'You Picked A Fight with the Wrong State'

Senator from Massachusetts derides congressional attempt to 'intimidate' state Attorney General Maura Healey

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has said "fossil fuel companies that deceived investors and consumers about the dangers of climate change should be held accountable." (Photo: City Year/flickr/cc)

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) turned up the heat on ExxonMobil and its congressional accomplices on Wednesday, publicly and passionately coming to the defense of her state's attorney general, Maura Healey, in her ongoing fight to hold Big Oil accountable for climate crimes.

Healey and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, along with eight environmental organizations, were issued subpoenas last week by the head of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), seeking information and documents related to their ExxonKnew investigations.

As Inside Climate News reports:

The subpoena to the nongovernmental organizations seeks documents and communications related to dealings with any attorneys general or eight advocacy organizations. It specifically seeks records "relating to the investigation, subpoenas duces tecum, or potential prosecution of companies, nonprofit organizations, scientists, or other individuals related to the issue of climate change."

Smith's subpoena to the New York and Massachusetts attorneys general demands similar information but goes deeper by seeking records related to any interaction with various federal agencies, including the Department of Justice, the Environmental Protection Agency or the Executive Office of the President.

The move was decried immediately as an oil-soaked "abuse of power," with green groups pointing to campaign contributions from fossil fuel corporations to members of the committee, and Healey explicitly stating she would not comply.

Warren, in a series of tweets on Wednesday, similarly blasted the congressional maneuver, which she painted as an example of Exxon wielding disproportionate influence over lawmakers:

Warren concluded her tweet-storm with words of warning for Smith and ExxonMobil: "you picked a fight with the wrong state & the wrong AG."

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