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Angie Paccione Links Musgrave To Big Oil Money - 11/15/2005

ANGIE PACCIONE LINKS MUSGRAVE TO BIG OIL MONEY

State Representative Angie Paccione (D-53) today accused Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave of giving preferential treatment to her Big Oil friends while ignoring how soaring energy prices have ravaged the farmers, ranchers, truckers and small businesses of the 4th Congressional District.

Big Oil raked in the largest profits in American business history this year while Musgrave looked the other way, and voted to give her oil baron buddies a total of $14 billion in tax breaks so they can make even more money.

“Whose side is she on?” said Angie Paccione, the Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress. “The tax give-away to Big Oil is seven times what the House plans to allocate to the Low Income Heating Assistance Program in 2006. With winter fuel prices surging, Colorado stands to lose $1.4 million for heating assistance for working families while Representative Musgrave is lining the pockets of Exxon and they are lining hers.”

Musgrave pocketed $31,700 in contributions from energy and natural resources companies during the current campaign year, and is on track to surpass the almost $57,000 she took from Big Oil in the previous cycle. Exxon Mobile Corp., which posted a quarterly profit of $9.9 billion, has channeled $17,000 to her campaign. But while the rich oil companies have been kind to their pet congresswoman, they created a crisis within Colorado’s 4th CD, which Musgrave represents in Congress.

"If prices had stayed high much longer, it would have blown up the economy," said Earl Tice, a long-haul trucker in Lamar. "I've had to flat refuse work if I could not collect an extra fuel surcharge. I would have lost money on the haul. It's tough.” The sharply increased fuel costs have a ripple effect in small communities, Tice explained. As truckers, farmers, ranchers and meat-packing plants have to increase their fuel costs, the profit margins fall at local businesses, which then hire fewer people, and there is less money in family pockets and less spending at stores. The effect will be compounded when heating costs increase this winter.

"This country is going to have to do something about fuel prices. The costs may have come down a little but now we're heading into winter and looking at high heating bills," he said.

“I’ve fought hard for working families in the State legislature,” said Paccione. "The citizens of Colorado’s 4th Congressional District deserve better representation than they are currently receiving. Marilyn Musgrave is simply out of touch with the needs of Colorado. We need a strong, independent voice that is not beholden to extremist agendas and special interests. I will work hard to restore integrity and leadership in Congress.” ****

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