Monday, May 5, 2008

McCracken for Congress -- Progress Report -- May 4th 2008

As we move the campaign from Democratic primary to general election mode, I am going to make some changes to the weekly progress report. Over the last few months I've used this weekly report give updates on the events we've participated in over the past week. I'll continue to keep you informed on where we're at and what we're doing but I'm going to provide comment on issues of interest to the citizens of the 5th district. We'll also keep you updated on what is going on inside the campaign.

Truckers Converge on Washington - Fuel Prices Are Hurting Everyone: Last week, truckers converged on Washington to protest the high price of diesel fuel and to show members of Congress the negative effects on the transportation industry that is so vital to our nation's economy. In response to the trucker's rally, Congressman John Peterson issued a press release stating the following: “For the past year and four months, the House Democrat leadership has done absolutely nothing to reduce the price at the pump. Their unwillingness to address the energy crisis at it's roots “supply and demand” will only further enhance the economic burden on every man, woman, and child in America. The protest today, by blue collar, working class truckers, further emphasizes how out of touch the Democrat-controlled Congress is with the American people.”.

I have to take issue with Congressman Peterson's statement placing blame on the policies of the Democratic Congress over the past 16 months. In fact, this crisis has been building in the 6 years prior while the Republican Party had total control of the White House and Congress and no meaningful legislation was offered to avert the impending crisis. Additionally, it must be recognized that the instability of the Middle East, brought on by President George W. Bush's decision to invade Iraq, is a factor in OPEC's ongoing policy to drive oil prices to record highs.

It should also be noted that President Bush has done little to influence OPEC policies either. I can remember in the 90's when OPEC would begin to drive up the price per barrel of oil, President Bill Clinton would immediately order a release of strategic oil reserves to put more oil on the market which would stabilize oil prices.

Frankly, blame must lie on both sides of the aisle in Washington. Back in the 1970's, our nation received a wake up call but leaders in Washington ignored it for the last 30 plus years. While other nations invested in alternative fuels and worked to decrease their dependence on oil from the Middle East, government leaders in the United States continued to allow the powerful petroleum industry to dictate our energy policies.

Now, we are at a critical point again. Families are struggling to afford gas and heating oil. Truckers are feeling the pinch of higher diesel fuel prices which will be passed on in higher prices to the consumers. Everyone is hurting, except who? Who is making record profits? The same powerful petroleum industry that our government leaders allowed to dictate our energy policy for the last 30 plus years! And, does anyone really believe the solution is to allow the petroleum industry access to traditional oil reserves. No, we need to move away from “Big Oil” controlling our energy policy and move towards renewable and alternative fuel technologies. The wake up call has returned, the alarm clock is ringing and we better not hit the snooze button again.

I've made it clear from the start of this campaign that I'm not running against Congressman Peterson. He has been very helpful and supportive to Clearfield County and our county commissioners have built a very positive relationship with him throughout his service as our congressman. The point I'm making is the oil crisis we are facing is truly a threat to our economy, our national security and our way of life. There is no time for partisan finger pointing. Congressman Peterson is correct in this regard. We need our leaders in Washington to address this issue NOW. Congress needs to forget it is an election year and get to work on plausible solutions in a bipartisan manner because the people they claim to represent are suffering. They can't wait for January 2009, they need help now.

Campaign Organization Changes: Over the next few weeks, we will be announcing some important changes and additions to the McCracken for Congress campaign committee. The changes will put organization in place throughout the 5th Congressional District. We know going forward, the race will be tough and we need to work to earn votes in every county in the district. It will be important to have organized campaign teams in every county to work at the local and county level to spread our message. It will also help to have people we can count on at the local level who know their communities and will help me learn more about the issues important the people they know.

Mark B. McCracken
Your Candidate for Congress

1 comment:

Glacial said...

great job!

Peterson wants to blame everyone but himself.