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Blunt ad: "President Trump is caving to ethanol lobbyists"

Beginning today, a group led by mid-sized oil refiners is running ads on Fox & Friends — a show the president is known to watch — that knock the administration for backing off changes to the national biofuels mandate called the Renewable Fuel Standard.

Why it matters: The bluntly worded, weeklong Fox ad campaign aimed right at President Trump's eyeballs signals the intensity of the fight over the RFS, a topic that pits the biofuels industry and midwestern lawmakers against the oil industry and its Capitol Hill allies.

In their words: "Donald Trump campaigned on a promise to drain the swamp, protect our manufacturing jobs, and restore American energy dominance. That's why we elected him. But President Trump is caving to ethanol lobbyists, raising costs on American refiners to appease foreign biodiesel special interests, and jeopardizing U.S. energy independence," the ad states.

Who they are: The coalition includes Valero Energy, Monroe Energy (which is owned by Delta Airlines), PBF Energy and other members. The group says the cost of meeting the RFS — especially purchasing compliance credits known as renewable identification numbers — threatens medium-sized refiners and their workers.

Go deeper: The RFS, created by a 2005 law and expanded in a 2007 statute, requires growing amounts of biofuels in nation's transportation fuel mix. Amy's column last week takes a closer look.

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