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Meet the Asthma Aggravators

Pete Altman

Posted March 15, 2011 in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Solving Global Warming, U.S. Law and Policy

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Today members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee voted in favor of HR 910, known (by me) as the Asthma Aggravation Act of 2011, because it will allow big corporations to dump unlimited amounts of carbon pollution from power plants and other industrial sources.

Health, consumer and small business groups are on record opposing HR 910.

By passing out of committee a bill that allows unlimited carbon pollution and passing the Asthma Aggravation Act, these House members have made themselves Asthma Aggravators. As leading public health groups and scientists have made clear, carbon pollution poses a wide range of public health threats from more powerful heat waves and extreme weather events to spreading infectious diseases and worsening air pollution problems. That last one ties carbon pollution to asthma, a respiratory disease suffered by 24 million Americans, including 7 million children. Air pollution worsens asthma.

Votes for HR 910 benefit the agenda of our biggest polluters like Koch Industries, which along with other polluters is sinking millions of dollars into efforts to block badly-needed updates to clean air safeguards.

So here’s a little run-down of the Asthma Aggravators, the number of people and children in and around their district whose health is made more vulnerable by their vote, and the amount big polluters have given them in recent years.

Member of Congress Party State Adults with asthma
in and around the district
Kids with asthma
in and around the district
Contributions From Polluters
Michael Rogers R MI 21,586* 5,739*  $         482,000
Mike Ross D AR 55,807 14,348  $         262,000
Brian P. Bilbray R CA 258,743 70,082  $         424,000
Mary Bono Mack R CA 181,226 54,909  $         268,700
Cory Gardner R CO 80,921 21,016  $           29,500
Cliff Stearns R FL 144,399 42,504  $         266,500
John Barrow D GA 73,019 19,890  $         242,000
J. Phillip Gingrey R GA 111,689 32,290  $           75,750
Adam Kinzinger R IL 101,221 30,301  $           17,000
John Shimkus R IL 85,384 21,829  $         889,695
Mike Pompeo R KS 61,783 17,385  $           18,000
Brett Guthrie R KY 138,582 32,807  $           60,000
Ed Whitfield R KY 68,568 15,711  $         672,000
Bill Cassidy R LA 65,337 18,571  $           88,500
Steve J. Scalise R LA 98,879 26,630  $         168,000
Fred Upton R MI 81,751 19,111  $         765,000
Gregg Harper R MS 84,981 27,324  $         147,200
Sue Wilkins Myrick R NC 103,645 32,072  $         333,200
Lee Terry R NE 50,656 16,787  $         442,531
Charles Bass R NH 120,358 25,108  $         288,000
Leonard Lance R NJ 155,140 39,718  $           31,000
Robert E. Latta R OH 107,627 25,659  $           42,000
John A. Sullivan R OK 78,014 20,977  $         784,378
Greg Walden R OR 69,094 16,628  $         443,000
Timothy F. Murphy R PA 180,349 37,454  $         522,000
Joseph R. Pitts R PA 129,555 31,972  $         196,000
Marsha W. Blackburn R TN 196,452 52,213  $         238,143
Joe Barton R TX 161,107 53,437  $       2,879,385
Michael C. Burgess R TX 380,889 128,018  $         345,822
Pete Olson R TX 403,046 136,558  $         280,250
Jim Matheson D UT 162,582 54,700  $         453,000
Morgan H. Griffith R VA 69,344 13,937  $           14,400
Cathy McMorris Rodgers R WA 66,851 15,500  $         207,783
David McKinley R WV 56,768 11,389  $           33,900

Sources: Asthma prevalence data based on American Lung Association published estimates by county. Estimates in this table do not correlate directly to the number of people in a district with asthma as some districts only overlay parts of counties. Therefore, the data is said to reflect the asthma prevalence “in and around” the district. * figure for Mike Rogers are just for Ingham County.

Campaign contributions information is from Open Secrets (http://www.OpenSecrets.org) and Federal Election Commission (http://www.fec.gov/disclosures.html) reports of contributions from oil and gas, electric utility, and coal and mining sectors. Top donors in these categories oppose key EPA safeguards.



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