November 18, 2005
Chevron CEO denies 2001 Cheney task force meetings
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Chevron Corp Chief Executive David
O'Reilly on Friday denied that he or any representative of
Chevron took part in Vice President Dick Cheney's energy task
"I did not participate on the Vice President's Task Force
in 2001, nor did any Chevron representative. I did not
participate in meetings convened by the Task Force, nor did any
Chevron representative," O'Reilly said in a letter to
Republican Sen. Pete Domenici and Democrat Sen. Jeff Bingaman.
The letter follows O'Reilly's testimony, along with other
Big Oil executives, at a Congressional hearing last week on
price gouging in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
Democrats and environmental groups have fought
unsuccessfully to find out which energy industry executives met
privately with Cheney's group in 2001 as it prepared a broad
plan friendly to oil industry interests. Environmental groups
said they were mostly excluded from the discussions.
At the hearings last week, Democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg
asked the five executives there, "Did your company or any
representatives in your companies participate in Vice President
Cheney's energy force in 2001?"
Each executive answered the question in the negative.
Lautenberg has subsequently demanded an investigation into
whether any of them were lying.
The Washington Post reported on Wednesday that a White
House document showed that some companies -- Exxon Mobil Corp.,
Conoco, Shell Oil Co. and BP America Inc., whose executives
testified at last week's Senate hearing -- did in fact meet
with the task force, but Chevron was not named in the document.
(Additional reporting by Tom Doggett in Washington)