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Koch has big influence on energy committee

Koch Industries and its employees contributed $279,500 to 22 of the 31 Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and $32,000 to five Democrats on the committee, Tribune news service reported. That's more than any other oil and gas company, including Exxon and Mobil. In addition, five GOP freshman lawmakers on the committee, including Rep. Mike Pompeo (in photo), R-Wichita, benefited during the 2010 campaign from separate advertising and grassroots activity by Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity. The article also noted that Pompeo had past business ties with Koch and that his chief of staff, Mark Chenoweth, is a former Koch Industries attorney.