Allen on Energy, Environment, Guns, and Security  

Monday, June 05, 2006

In today's look at Senator George Allen, I'll be looking at his platforms on energy, environment, guns, and security.

Making America More Energy Independent

I believe it is imperative that America becomes less dependent on foreign sources of energy. In the Senate, we recently passed an energy bill which will benefit national security, jobs and competitiveness. This legislation will take advantage of the fact that America is the Saudi Arabia of coal by advancing clean coal technologies as well as advancing nuclear technology development. We must also look to 21st century innovations in biofuels, flexible fuel vehicles and solar photovoltaics to increase our energy independence.

In addition, I believe we should be exploring for oil and natural gas on the barren north slope of Alaska (ANWR). Alaskans from all walks of life support this exploration and understand it can be done in an environmentally sound way and that it would result in jobs and revenues. For America, it would mean energy security, lower natural gas and gasoline prices, jobs and economic competitiveness. And we could do it all without even harming a single mosquito.

Increasing America's energy independence will help reduce the soaring prices at the gas pump and make our nation more secure by lessening our dependence on energy from unstable and hostile dictators around the world.
All very important things that absolutely MUST be done in order for the United States to successfully make it with today's energy needs. Also, we should be drilling in Colorado, where there's been a recent find which contains more oil than the entire Middle East. But why must this be done by the government? Why must the government be involved at all? Why not sell those government-owned resources to private industry, who would do a much better job, and get the government out of the energy business altogether??

The answer to my questions is a simple one: The US government, having disregarded its constitutional limitations for so long that those involved have become accustomed to having this power and will refuse to the utter death to let it go. We Americans must put their feet to the fire and force them to obey the law if it is going to happen.

Encouraging the Responsible Use of Our Lands
As one who loves being outdoors, I have a great appreciation for our natural resources and environment, especially here in Virginia. I believe it is possible to limit government intervention in private land ownership and still encourage responsible management of our lands and resources. In the Senate, I've advocated research and development of clean fuel technology to increase competitiveness while protecting the environment. Moreover, federal tax laws cause "sprawl" as forestry and agricultural land is sold to pay federal taxes. Such unfair, undesirable tax laws must be reformed. (my emphasis)
In doing what you have done in the Senate, Mr. Allen, you have violated the limitations placed upon you by the US Constitution. There are no provisions in that document that justify any US government official engaging in any such activity. You have a point in the idea of reforming the tax laws, which also needs to be done, but why are you bragging about breaking the law?

Protecting 2nd Amendment Rights
As a Governor and a Senator, I have a long and consistent record of supporting the rights of Americans to protect their families and themselves. I will remain committed to protecting our Second Amendment rights, including that of law-abiding citizens to own firearms. In the Senate, I voted against renewal of the toothless, cosmetic "Assault Weapons Ban" because facts have demonstrated that it has not reduced crime, but became a platform for taking away additional gun rights with more imagery. In addition, I have co-sponsored legislation to repeal the unconstitutional D.C. gun ban and an additional bill to allow pilots in the cockpit to be armed for the defense of the aircraft and their passengers.
So far, this looks like the single best reason to support Mr. Allen. Without this right, Americans cannot defend themselves against criminals of all stripes, including those in the US government. Support of the Second Amendment should be a prerequisite for all those who seek office. In fact, I wish there were a candidate who not only supported the Second Amendment, but all of the other Amendments in the Bill of Rights as well, along with the Constitution itself. Still, it is the Second Amendment that ultimately guarantees the rest of the rights that we so cherish.

Homeland Security
Safer at Home
In the wake of the 9/11 terror attacks, I have consistently advocated the clear need for better coordination and information sharing between law enforcement and intelligence agencies utilizing technology to assist in analysis and coherent action between federal and State agencies.

I also believe it is imperative that our intelligence community respects the privacy rights of individual citizens while aggressively investigating and prosecuting those who might seek to execute acts of terror in the U.S. and around the world.
So what exactly do you propose, Mr. Allen? It seems that on any number of things, you can come up with an item or two that you have supported in violation of the Constitution, yet you don't point to a single specific item you have supported in an area where you, as a US Senator, have the clear constitutional authority to act. I gave you kudos on your support of the Second Amendment support, and would love to give the same here.

America needs a good leader. I believe Mr. Allen has what it takes to lead. I challenge him to read what I have written (and what I will write) and stand on the firm ground that is the US Constitution. He has obvious leadership skills, as much of what he has advocated has passed. Perhaps we conservatives could enlighten him to his real responsibility in governing the US, and persuade him to act more within the vision of the Founding Fathers. Given that any other candidate is most likely either a non-story or a socialist, we must work hard to bring Mr. Allen to the constitutional way of thinking. Remember that the first and most important characteristic of a candidate is the ability to win. George Allen is still our best hope.