Politico Bombshell: 'Obama Biggest Recipient of BP Cash'

Politico Wednesday published a bombshell headline, "Obama Biggest Recipient of BP Cash."

"While the BP oil geyser pumps millions of gallons of petroleum into the Gulf of Mexico, President Barack Obama and members of Congress may have to answer for the millions in campaign contributions they've taken from the oil and gas giant over the years," Erika Lovley's piece began.

"BP and its employees have given more than $3.5 million to federal candidates over the past 20 years, with the largest chunk of their money going to Obama, according to the Center for Responsive Politics," she continued.

"During his time in the Senate and while running for president, Obama received a total of $77,051 from the oil giant and is the top recipient of BP PAC and individual money over the past 20 years, according to financial disclosure records."

Despite this shocking headline and introduction, the rest of the article mostly focused on Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.):

In Congress, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), who last week cautioned that the incident should "not be used inappropriately" to halt Obama's push for expansion of offshore drilling, has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of BP's largesse. Her comments created some blowback, with critics complaining that she is too blasé about the impact of the disaster, even though she was among the first lawmakers to call for a federal investigation into the spill.

Obama's name was only mentioned once more:

The top congressional recipients of BP campaign cash include Republican Rep. Don Young of the oil-intensive Alaska delegation, who has received almost as much as Obama, raking in $73,300 during his congressional tenure.

So, in an article supposedly about Obama, four paragraphs referred to his receipt of BP campaign contributions while SEVEN dealt with Landrieu's.

Does this give us a clue as to how other mainstream outlets will report this revelation IF they consider it newsworthy?

To be sure, as Landrieu's state is currently the one that might most negatively be impacted by the disaster, it is to be expected that her financial ties to BP are explored.

CNN's John King clearly focused on the dollars she received from the oil giant during his interview with her Tuesday even though he mentioned that Obama and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) received more in the 2008 election cycle.

But Obama is the President, and wields far greater power than some senator from Louisiana.

As such, will mainstream outlets that choose to report this finding point the finger at the White House possibly asking if the President will return the contributions he's received in light of this ongoing disaster?

Or will they deflect criticism on him by saying everybody took money from BP, Democrats and Republicans alike, making this much ado about nothing?

Assuming the latter, is that what would happen if a Republican was in the White House?

*****Update: Hot Air's Ed Morrissey commented via Twitter, "If Goldman Sachs didn't cause a splash..." 


Although some news outlets addressed Obama's HUGE financial ties to the investment banking giant, his receipt of their campaign contributions was practically met with a collective "So what?"

Will this revelation meet the same fate? 

*****Update II: Mediaite's Obama-loving Glynnis MacNicol gives us another peek into how the President's fans in the media will cover this story...

There is simply no way this story is not going to be politicized in one manner or other, and this morning's report that President Obama was the recipient of the most amount of BP campaign contribution cash provides a fresh new angle to spend the day hammering in...You can see where this is going...likely straight to Rush Limbaugh's radio show!

I'm SURE it will. The bigger questions are whether it will go STRAIGHT to mainstream media outlets and if THEY'LL just push this off as fodder for conservative talk radio hosts instead of something the public should really be concerned about. 

*****Update III: What should make this story juicier -- assuming there are actually any REAL journalists out there! -- is that Obama's weekly address last Saturday was about -- wait for it! -- campaign finance reform! 

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Politico Erika Lovley Mary Landrieu
Noel Sheppard's picture