Revealing Politics released a video Tuesday from last week’s hearing before the House Health, Insurance and Environment Committee at which state Rep. Joann Ginal (D-Fort Collins) acknowledged that the oversight committee would be weighted in favor of Democrats.
“Yeah, it’s political,” said Ginal. “I mean, the governor is choosing some people, but what we’re trying to do as far as the majority and minority is let everyone have a chance at choosing someone.”
Her response came as a result of questioning from state Rep. Lois Landgraf (R-Fountain), who pointed out that House Bill 1297 creates a 13-member “scientific oversight committee,” eight of whom would be appointed by partisan elected officials.
Democrats would have six appointments: Gov. John Hickenlooper would name four, while House Speaker Mark Ferrandino (D-Denver) would appoint one and Senate President Morgan Carroll (D-Aurora) would appoint one.
Republicans would name two members to the oversight committee, one by House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso and one by Senate Minority Leader Bill Cadman.
“If that doesn’t speak to bias, I don’t know what does,” said Landgraf.
Republicans have accused Democrats of pushing the Front Range study in an effort to smear the oil and gas industry.
“With Democrats controlling the study, how ‘scientific’ could it be?” asked Revealing Politics at the end of the video.
The committee passed the bill on a 6-5 partisan vote. The measure is scheduled to be heard Friday in the House Appropriations Committee.