March 25, 2013

Krancer at a recent conference insisted that hydraulic fracking was "never intended" to be regulated at federal level.
Remember that report just a couple of weeks ago about the obscene revolving door in Harrisburg between the highest levels of state government and the oil-and-gas industry -- showing that every governor, every Pennsylvania environmental commissioner, and numerous high-level officials over the last 20 years have gone to work for Big Oil after their, um, public service.

Now Gov. Corbett's environmental commissioner, Michael Krancer, will need to make sure that the revolving door doesn't boink him in the head on the way out.

In a late Friday afternoon news dump, Corbett announced that the Bryn Mawr attorney -- who infuriated environmentalisms with his industry-leaning, pollution-overlooking policies -- is leaving. You'll be shocked,shocked to learn Krancer's destination: The Philadelphia law firm Blank Rome LLC -- an associate member of the pro-industry Marcellus Shale Coalition, which represents oil and gas companies and is eager to represent even more. Krancer, who worked for the firm once before in the 1990s, will become chair of Blank Rome’s Energy, Petrochemical and Natural Resources Practice.

Blank Rome, by the way, is the law firm that showered Corbett and his wife with more than $15,000 worth of gifts when he was attorney general and running for governor, most in the form of tickets to a swank yearly gala at the Academy of Music. For the pro-fracking crowd, the unholy alliance between Corbett, Krancer and the industry is the gift that keeps on giving.

Much ado about business as usual? Perhaps, but ask yourself this. If Michael Krancer had devoted these last two years in Harrisburg to doing everything within his considerable power to make sure that fracking rigs didn't foul the skies over rural counties in the Keystone Statetaint rural drinking wells or lead to questionable dumping in our streams and rivers, do you really think the industry would embrace him for such a lucrative job?

Will Bunch is a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter and senior political writer for the Philadelphia Daily News. He blogs at

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