Republicans, incumbents receive large majority of oil lobby cash

Published: Wednesday May 24, 2006

Republican incumbents are far more likely than their colleagues in Congress to receive oil company money, RAW STORY has found.

Eighty four percent of the $8.6 million oil and gas companies have contributed to the 2006 elections has gone to Republicans, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

According to data compiled by the Center, the top 20 recipients of oil money in Congress are all Republicans.

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX,) tops the list with $159,611 in oil company contributions this cycle. Rick Santorum (R-PA), whose campaign coffers made waves on the blogosphere yesterday, comes in at number 2, trailing Hutchison by nearly $40,000. At the bottom of the top 20 list is Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who pulled in just $48,500 from the industry.

Incumbency also seems to be a major factor in determining who will receive oil company backing. $4.8 of the $5.3 million doled out by the oil industry this election was given to candidates already holding office.

Six of the top ten Senate recipients of oil and gas industry contributions this campaign cycle are facing what some believe to be competitive races for re-election.