The Houston Chronicle is reporting today a connection between the waiver to the Renewable Fuels Standard files by Texas Governor Rick Perry and a $100,000 donation by Pilgrims Pride.
Gov. Rick Perry's request for a waiver of federal corn-based ethanol production mandates was prompted by a March meeting he had with East Texas poultry producer Lonnie "Bo" Pilgrim, who six days later gave $100,000 to the Republican Governors Association chaired by Perry.
In the three weeks following that donation, Perry's staff began preparing to submit the renewable fuel standards waiver request to the federal Environmental Protection Agency, according to 596 pages of records obtained from the governor's office by the Houston Chronicle under the Texas Public Information Act.
The case is further strengthened by the fact that the Governor's office coordinated with a public relations firm representing Pilgrims Pride.
Perry's staff coordinated preparation of the waiver request with Pilgrim's Pride lobbyist Gaylor Hughey of Tyler and Cliff Angelo with Public Strategies, the firm handling a public relations campaign against ethanol for Pilgrim's Pride and a coalition of meat producers.
Talking points prepared for Pilgrim's appearance before the Republican governors were almost identical to ones Public Strategies gave reporters in advance of a June 24 news conference the firm organized for Perry at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
It is not often that a company is able to hire a spokesman that is able to petition the EPA.