Friday, July 8, 2016

ExxonMobil May Have Friends In High Places, But Fraud Is Not Constitutionally Protected

From:  Bill Moyers

How far will fossil fuel industry-funded elected officials go to protect one of the biggest carbon polluters in the world?




This post originally appeared at The Huffington Post.

When a handful of attorneys general launched investigations of ExxonMobil for climate fraud, I wonder if they had any idea that they would be attacked for attempting to stifle the company’s right of free speech.

After all, if ExxonMobil publicly downplayed warnings by its own scientists about the threat posed by burning fossil fuels in its communications with investors and the general public, it very well may have committed fraud, which is not protected by the First Amendment.

Legal experts have cited the case against the tobacco industry as an apt analogy. For years, tobacco companies emphasized uncertainty about their products’ risks to stave off government regulations. ExxonMobil essentially has been doing the same thingMORE