Right Wing think tank sets target on Washington State cap and trade

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You’re forgiven if you haven’t heard of the Washington Policy Center (WPC), a right-wing “freemarket” think tank based in Seattle, Washington. Most likely you haven’t heard of them because you don’t follow State-level politics or because the WPC has changed its name a few times over the last few years.

In any event, you should get to know them because they are running some pretty heavy lobbying activities at the Washington State Legislature in an attempt to block plans for a new cap and trade greenhouse gas reduction strategy.

You can go here to read our full research peice on the Washington Policy Center: Washington Policy Center: Background and History.

Here’s the quick highlights:

Background

The Washington Policy Center (WPC) is a free-market think tank based in Seattle, Washington with annual revenue of approx. $1.3 million. The WPC was originally founded as the “Washington Institute for Policy Studies.”  In 1997 the Washington Institute for Policy Studies (WIPS) created a new organization, the Washington Institute Foundation.  Eventually, in 1998, the Washington Institute Foundation replaced WIPS.  In 2001 the Washington Institute Foundation was renamed the Washington Policy Center.

WPC’s mission is to “promote limited government and free market solutions for state and local issues, and be Washington state’s premier public policy institute providing high qulity analysis and research for our state’s citizens, policymakers and media.”  Washington Policy Center has been referred to as the “Heritage Foundation of the Northwest.”

Funding

The Washington Policy Center chooses not to disclose its donors.  However, according Media Transparency, $387,500 have been donated cumulatively to the WPC, WIF, and WIPS.  The largest donor is The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, Inc.; it has provided the WPC with just under half the funding – $178,500

The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation is considered the “largest and most influential right-wing foundation” in the United States.

We’re watching and researching the activities of the Washington Policy Center, so watch for more on this group in the coming weeks.

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Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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