Press Release: Lon Johnson to Tom Casperson: “Stop Lying for Canadian Oil”

[TRAVERSE CITY, MICH.] — In response to State Senator Tom Casperson’s floor speech yesterday wherein he defended the Canadian-owned Enbridge Line 5 pipeline running through the Great Lakes, Lon Johnson, candidate for Congress in Michigan’s 1st District, released the following statement:

“Among many things Michiganders learned from the crisis in Flint was not to trust politicians in Lansing when they tell us not to worry about our water. Here we have in Tom Casperson yet another Lansing politician trying to shout down the protests of 29 mayors, communities, and townships in Michigan who are calling for the Line 5 pipeline to be inspected.

“Instead of listening to the people of the U.P. and Northern Michigan, Casperson takes to the Senate floor to defend a Canadian oil company — risking another Flint-level water crisis in the Great Lakes to protect the oil companies funding his campaign.

“What’s worse is to hear Casperson openly lying by claiming that if Line 5 is shut down at the Straits of Mackinac, propane costs will go up. Shutting down the Line 5 pipeline at the Mackinac Straits would still allow for the continued propane distribution from Rapid River in the U.P. as it’s done now — making sure affordable heating propane is transported uninterrupted to our families in the U.P. Senator Casperson knows this — it’s in his State Senate district — but instead he chose to lie to and scare his constituents.

“I’ve said this consistently: 1) Shut down the Line 5 oil pipeline at the Mackinac Straits; 2) Independently verify if it’s safe; and 3) Work with the Governor’s task force to seek alternatives to this pipeline.”

Oil and gas industry special interest groups and their executives have donated more than $28,000 to Casperson, with the majority of these donations ($18,050) occurring over the past year. [, MI Secretary of State Campaign Finance Database]

Lon Johnson can be reached at (231) 384–2712 or email at

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