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Bloomberg Targets Bondi Over Power Plant Lawsuit

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
Wikimedia Commons
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

A political committee funded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is targeting Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi for her participation in a multi-state lawsuit that challenges an Obama administration rule aimed at reducing carbon emissions from power plants.

Independence USA PAC launched an ad campaign of at least $10 million on Friday focused on four state attorneys general --- Republicans Bondi, Bill Schuette of Michigan and Brad Schimel of Wisconsin and Missouri Democrat Chris Koster --- for having joined a West Virginia-led lawsuit opposing the White House's Clean Power Plan.

The Bondi ad is online and is slated to air in the Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Orlando markets.

Howard Wolfson, senior adviser to Independence USA PAC, said in a conference call with reporters that the targeted attorneys general are in states that are politically competitive.

"Attorneys general in many states are frequently relatively unknown to voters, certainly relative to governors and senators and mayors," Wolfson said.

"They often operate under the cover of darkness. They think they can take decisions that are at odds with the interests of their constituents without anyone really noticing. And we want to make sure that we shine a very bright light on the activities of these attorneys general to make sure the constituents in all four states know what they are up to."

In an ad, Bondi is characterized as "siding with big polluters," putting coal industry profits ahead of her constituents.

Bondi's office did not immediately respond Friday to a request for comment on the ads

The Clean Power Plan, released by the Environmental Protection Agency in August, sets limits on carbon pollution from existing power plants and is intended to help states reduce dependence on coal and other fossil fuels while increasing cleaner energy sources.

The lawsuit, filed Oct. 23 in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, includes two dozen states. It alleges that the EPA overstepped its legal authority in approving the rule, which is aimed, at least in part, at addressing climate change.