Liberal group hits GOP on oil record in new ad

Millions of dollars in donations from oil companies to Republican candidates have polluted Washington, a liberal group charged Thursday in a new ad.

Americans United for Change launched a television ad hitting Senate Republicans' response to the oil spill, as well as their stance on the energy and climate bill introduced last week by Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.).




The ad, which will begin airing over the next week on cable news networks in the Washington area, includes video of one of the underwater leaks in the oil pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico, which has spilled thousands of barrels of oil into coastal waters over the last month.


"We understand that Senate Republicans have been given 35 million reasons by the big oil companies to stand in the way of clean energy legislation," AUFC communications director Jeremy Funk said. "In the face of an environmental catastrophe of this magnitude, we hope that even the Grand Oil Party will think twice before standing with the polluters and standing in the way of a clean-energy future and new clean-energy jobs.”

Republicans have given Kerry and Lieberman's "American Power Act" a chilly reception since it was unveiled last week. The GOP has also objected to attempts in the past week by Democrats to raise the amount of damages for which oil companies are liable in the case of an accident.

Republicans have objected to unanimous-consent attempts to raise the liability to $10 billion (from a present level of $75 million), reasoning that more specificity in the law is needed and arguing that it could strangle independent oil producers.

Watch the new spot below: