"Mommy, where do state AG 'theories of the case' come from?" - Climate Litigation Watch

“Mommy, where do state AG ‘theories of the case’ come from?”

It ain’t the stork.

Following on this blockbuster revelation, the New York Attorney General abruptly changed course, having first helpfully waved a big flag that it was hiding something that must look very, very bad.

This is the redacted (wait what?) June release of a Lee Wasserman/Rockefeller Family Fund (RFF) email to NYAG asking it to launch an investigation of RFF’s political target Exxon Mobil to obtain discovery that might be helpful to the group’s crusade, and what the heck maybe prosecute it, too!:

Last week, after Energy Policy Advocates highlighted the effort in an amicus brief in the Southern District of New York, and in response to New York attorney and Manhattan Contrarian Francis Menton suing for the document in unredacted form:

Lo and behold there is the hidden opinion, improperly hidden, but hidden surely because—after a few months of lobbying law enforcement to go after the activists’ target (again…what?)—it became People of the State of New York v. ExxonMobil Corporation. In that matter, NYAG prosecuted the company precisely as RFF’s opinion said it ought. And as close to verbatim as a civil libertarian’s nightmare could conjure.

Which resulted in a “debacle” for the schemers. Big time.

Of course, as Energy Policy Advocates pointed out in its SDNY amicus, NYAG lawyers wistfully hoped about this RFF opinion being pushed on them, “maybe he can come to see that he’s wrong”.

However, Schneiderman’s politico CoS, trying to keep the lawyers in line with RFF demands, confided to Wasserman “Please do know that I want to find a way on this as much as you do”. And did. 

So there you see where the New York Attorney General’s theory of the case came from. Without doubt. And the Office wanted to hide that fact in the worst way. Which it also did.