Middle Class Matters
by moevaughn, Fri May 23, 2008 at 11:50:42 AM EDT
As part of her Middle Class Matters Tour, former Governor Jeanne Shaheen this week joined a group of New Hampshire citizens for a house party in Amherst, NH.
Gov. Shaheen gave an informal talk on her motivation for entering the Senate race and her goals once elected. She was the first woman elected Governor of New Hampshire and, if the polls hold, will be the first woman Senator from the state. As the event's hostess said in her introductory remarks, Shaheen was also one of the first NH public servants to emphasize environmental issues back when she was a state senator. Hence her present campaign, as her earlier campaigns, is associated with the color green. She has been leading Senator Sununu in the polls by around 7-10%.
Gov. Shaheen began by saying that the country is facing so many overwhelming challenges and she wants to address them all, but her two main priorities are energy independence and universal health care. She made the chief focus in this conversation the growing energy crisis, pointing out that this actually affects three crucial issues important to Americans: the economy, national security, and the environment itself. Achieving greater energy independence from foreign sources is critical for our economy. The more independent we are, the less we will be paying for gas at the pump and heating oil for our furnaces. Jeanne also underscored the importance economically of eliminating tax breaks for oil companies. That money, she said, will be put to good use developing alternative sources of energy. The former governor had just visited a NH company called Mascoma which is using wood bi-products to produce "cellulosic" ethanol. (A needed alternative to corn-based ethanol, which has problems of its own.) She especially emphasized nothing can help the environment more than energy efficiency and conservation. Finally, our national security will be strengthened by achieving energy independence, since we as a nation will no longer be held hostage to other countries through our oil dependency.
Here's an outline of her energy/environmental plans from her website:
Jeanne Shaheen supports:
*Setting a goal of reducing carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050.
*Instituting economy-wide emissions reductions in our own country and working with international partners to achieve global emissions reductions. To reduce emissions, Shaheen believes we should institute a cap-and-trade system which limits pollutants by selling permits to corporations who pollute and enforcing caps on the amount of pollution they can emit. The profits from the auction of those permits should be invested in the development of clean, alternative energy sources like wind, solar and wood by-products.
*Developing a significant shift in our long-term energy policy by ending billions of dollars in tax breaks to Big Oil and instead investing that money in the development of renewable energy sources.
*Shifting tax incentives from corn-based ethanol to wood-based ethanol. Developing wood-based ethanol would provide a clean alternative energy source that would not impact the global food supply and, thanks to New Hampshire's abundant forests, would create jobs right here in the state.
Governor Shaheen ended her talk by highlighting her strong and passionate support for public campaign financing. Speaking of campaign financing, right now she is a couple million bucks behind Sununu. The Sununu campaign is already taking a low road, having just recently aired a negative ad here against Gov. Shaheen. In a personal email note from Jeanne to her supporters, she noted that Sununo has just this past week:
hired some of George W. Bush's political operatives to run his campaign. They are wasting no time.
New Hampshire will be a battleground state this election cycle and the Republican Party and their 527 special interest attack groups will pull no punches.
Our opponent is busy collecting big checks from oil and gas companies and wealthy corporate interests to pay for these attacks. We need your help to fight back. Reach out to your friends, neighbors, and coworkers and ask them to contribute and join the fight for change. Together, we can fight back.
Here's Gov. Shaheen's own first ad: http://jeanneshaheen.org/ad
If you like her ad, please donate so she can air some more ads soon. Thanks!