One may be shocked with the sticker price of Gov. Tom Wolf ’s inaugural celebration. I have seen reports of the cost being as high as $1.7 million. Yet the governor assures us that public money was not spent, thanks to the generosity of event sponsors. Thank goodness Wolf has the support of so many behind him moving Pennsylvania forward.
Notably absent from the inaugural celebration sponsors were the Big Green organizations that helped Wolf during his campaign. Where was the Sierra Club, PennEnvironment or Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania, which all lent their endorsements and campaign staff in support of the governor? They worked hard to propel Wolf into the executive office by promoting him as a champion for the environment. Why would they not want to share this moment of celebration in the inaugural limelight?
Could it be that they would need to be onstage with some of Pennsylvania’s largest polluters? For example, those who unabashedly gave thousands of dollars (sometimes tens of thousands) in sponsorship included our neighborly gas extraction and exportation companies EQT Corp., Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. and The Williams Cos. Perhaps you may recognize other event sponsors like the legal firms that represent their gas clients’ permit violations, environmental damages and eminent domain proceedings in court.
How embarrassing it would have been for Big Green to be seen together as allies with their nemeses. I suppose it was better to let Big Oil and Gas celebrate their victory with the governor.