China's CNOOC critics were grafted by Chevron

A show called America vs. China is under way in the United States. One of the most substantial parts of it has been the congressional campaign to discourage Chinese oil company CNOOC Ltd.'s acquisition of Unocal Corp. As PRAVDA.Ru earlier supposed, the White House is likely to approve the purchase of Unocal by the Chinese. Taking into consideration news that the rival suitor Chevron gave money to the most vocal critics of CNOOC’s participation in the bid, the chances of the latter are becoming much better.

Three lawmakers - Rep. Richard Pombo, a California Republican, Sen. Kent Conrad, a North Dakota Democrat, and Sen. James Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican - have been among the most vocal on Capitol Hill in criticizing CNOOC's proposed deal as anticompetitive and a threat to national security, say the reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. The perception that Congress could delay or spike a CNOOC deal is viewed as a major factor in Unocal's decision to stick with Chevron despite its lower bid, says the AP.

All three donations were disbursed by Chevron on June 29, about a week after CNOOC announced its bid, according to Chevron's June report to the FEC. Pombo received a contribution of $2,000 (Ђ1,647), while Conrad and Inhofe each received $1,000 (Ђ823).

Pombo - who represents San Ramon, California, where Chevron is based - has received $21,500 (Ђ17,705) from Chevron since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Spokesmen for the three lawmakers said they haven't worked with Chevron on the issue. They said the lawmakers' criticism of CNOOC's proposal reflects long-standing concerns about China, and isn't tied to campaign donations.

Chevron declined to comment on meetings with specific lawmakers, but the company doesn't "tie political contributions to any specific actions," Chevron spokesman Don Campbell said.

On the photo: Rep. Richard Pombo has received $21,500 (Ђ17,705) from Chevron since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics

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