Defeated Rep. Mark Critz to Work as Energy Lobbyist

Former One Term Congressman Mark Critz Joins Astroturfed Energy Firm

February 26, 2013



When will the revolving door in politics stop spinning?  No one may never know, but in the mean time, former Congressman Mark Critz just became the latest corporate democrat to sell out and become a lobbyist.  Mr. Critz has found a job with EIS Solutions, a “grassroots (according to PoliticsPA) energy lobbying firm”.  According to Politics PA, he’ll be a Senior VP in right smack in the middle Shale Country – or Johnstown, PA.   Here’s an excerpt from the article.

 “As a former Member of Congress and district director for Congressman John Murtha, Mark Critz has the experience and relationships at the local level to help difficult projects get approval,” EIS Solutions President Wade Haerle said. “Mark knows how to navigate local politics and governmental bureaucracies at the state and federal levels and will be an asset to clients seeking to build local support for energy related projects in the coal and natural gas industries.”

“It was an honor to serve the people of Western Pennsylvania in Congress where I had the opportunity fight for jobs and economic development,” Critz said in a company press release. “Development of our energy resources is vital to growing our regional economy and making our nation independent of foreign sources of energy. I look forward to working to make sure that our region develops these resources in a safe, responsible manner while working to grow our economy and meet our energy needs.”

What Politics PA fails to mention is that Mark Critz was fairly generous with the natural gas industry in PA.  While in the House, his voting record energy issues included him voting “yea” on the: “No More Solyndra Act,” “Stop the War On Coal Act,” extending the Keystone XL Pipeline, and to amend the Clean Water Act.     Over the past year I had a couple of twitter battles with Critz and one time he stated something along the lines that solar energy production is worse for the environment than fracking for natural gas.  So it looks like that this is a match made in heaven for the “democrat.”  Mr. Gibson also fails to mention that this “grassroots” effort that Critz is joining an astroturfed – an energy funded – lobbying group.

Sourcewatch, which is ran by the Center for Media and Democracy,  reports that EIS Solutions:

is a Grand Junction, Colorado-based public relations and astroturfing firm that handles government affairs,lobbying and PR for companies involved in the energy industry. The group’s principle spokesperson for energy industry issues in Colorado is Curtis Moore

And is responsible for organizing the Environmentally Conscious Consumers for Oil Shale:

 calls itself “a community-based organization,” but is actually a front group affiliated with numerous energy companies and energy-industry advocacy organizations. ECCOS was organized for the energy industry by Curtis Moore of the political astroturf organizing firm EIS Solutions, which works out of the same address as ECCOS and attorney Curtis Moore.

So there you have it.  A 1 term Congressman from Shale Country moves fairly quickly up the corporate ladder.  We salute you Mr. Critz.

Former Congressman Critz’s “Grassroots” Employer Caught Forging “Pro-Natural Gas” Signatures On Petitions

February 27, 2013


Yesterday, Keegan Gibson at Politics PA reported that former Pennsylvania Congressman Mark Critz received a new job working for  EIS Solutions – a “grassroots” organization (in their terms).  That very same “grassroots organization” that Mark Critz will be working for as a Senior VP in Johnstown, PA was just caught astroturfing and forging signatures in Colorado.

In an attempt to deceive the Fort Collins City Council, who was in the process of voting for a natural gas drilling ban, EIS Solutions – Mark Critz’s new “grassroots” employer – was caught forging petition signatures from local business owners.  The petition was an attempt to get city council members to believe that banning hydro-fracking within the town’s borders will be bad for business, and the lame forgery attempt by EIS  failed when the council voted in favor of the ban, a 5-2 decision.  According to Fort Collins Coloradoan reporter Bobby Magill, close to two-thirds of those on the petition denied signing the petition.  His story read:

Cali Rastrelli’s name is signed at the bottom of a petition submitted to the council. At the top, the petition says in bold letters, “Vote NO on the Fort Collins fracking ban.”

“Big Bill Pizza” is written in the blank where the signer could enter their business or organization.

“I haven’t signed any petition in the last month,” said Rastrelli, a Colorado State University student who lives in student housing. “I didn’t put my name on this. I’m not sure why somebody would have thought to sign my name.”

Big Bill Pizza, Rastrelli’s former employer, is in Centennial, and staff there were unaware of an effort to ban fracking in Fort Collins, said manager Leonna Gara.

Whoever signed Rastrelli’s name spelled it “Rasterelli.”

“I don’t know why I would have misspelled my own name,” she said

So once again Congressman Critz, we salute you for shilling with the natural gas industry.

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