Green group hits Gardner on oil ties

The League of Conservation Voters has Rep. Cory Gardner in its crosshairs in a new $1 million ad campaign hitting the Colorado Republican for his ties to "big oil."

The green group added Gardner, who announced his run against Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) last month, to its Dirty Dozen list on Thursday. That list targets candidates in Congress that "consistently side against the environment."

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Gardner is the second person added to the conservation group's hit list — Rep. David Jolly (R-Fla.) was targeted first during Florida's special election, which Jolly won earlier this year. The rest will be announced throughout the 2014 election cycle.

"Sometimes the signs are just there," the 30-second ad buy states. "Gardner took over $450,00 in contributions from the oil and gas industry and Gardner sides with them."

The group also takes issue with Gardner's stance on climate change, assailing the congressman for downplaying his "extreme views."

“It’s no surprise that corporate polluters are already trying to buy climate change denier Cory Gardner a Senate seat in November," Gene Karpinski, president of the LVC, said in a statement. "Cory Gardner has repeatedly helped big oil avoid paying their fair share while taking contributions from them hand over fist."

The conservation group made no mention of Gardner's push for natural gas exports, which plays well in Colorado because its a big natural-gas-producing state. Udall also introduced legislation last month calling for expedited natural gas exports to Ukraine and Eastern European countries.

The LCV supports Udall's run and plans to publicly endorse him, an official said.