Erik Paulsen is out with his second commercial this election season.
(Note : The first commercial was about human trafficking — a subject that John Kline also featured in his first campaign ad. Considering that the legislation was approved with Zero opposition, should tell the voters this is more about image-shaping than policy.)
This ad follows previous year’s themes … with his darling daughters teasing about their “Math Guy” Dad … who offers a simple message … Washington “must do more with less”.
For example, when one of his daughters asks about drinking water, “Dad” says “It’s free at the lake.”
Yeah, “free” water … but should you drink it ?
Since Minnesota is prime farm land, many of the state’s lakes and rivers now face the problem of having elevated levels of nitrogen in the water … add to that the hydraulic fracturing process, the method used to drill for natural gas, is becoming yet another major concern for groundwater contamination across America.
Now, you may think that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would be monitoring … and protecting us. But there are more than 140 chemicals in U.S. drinking water supplies that are not regulated by the EPA. More than 20 percent of U.S. water treatment systems violated key provisions of the Safe Drinking Water Act between 2004 and 2009 alone.
Now, here’s where Congressman Paulsen could do something to protect that “free water” that he wants his daughter to drink.
But, there’s a problem.
The House Committee on Appropriations passed the Interior and Environment Appropriations bill for FY 2015 that included a nine percent cut in the EPA’s overall budget.
Yeah, Washington “must do more with less”.
Accompanying the funding cut were 23 legislative riders and funding limits that that would undermine environmental laws and threaten public health and safety.
Additionally, compared with FY 2014, the bill proposes to cut funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) in half for this upcoming fiscal year to $152 million.
The LWCF has been around for a long time … established the same year that Erik Paulsen was born … and was designed to protect recreational opportunities and wildlife habitat in all 50 states.
The LWCF is to be funded NOT by tax dollars, but by royalties paid to the U.S. Treasury from offshore oil and gas exploration and development. It had been funded at $900 million … but Washington “must do more with less” so, Congress raids the fund and uses the money for other purposes.
It is a promise made to the American taxpayers, and broken — year after year.
This should not be a partisan issue.
In fact, a letter written by 28 Republicans pleaded their case :
“We are writing to emphasize the high priority we and other members of our conference place on resolving the funding challenges facing the Land and Water Conservation Fund, our nation’s premier program that supports the conservation, recreation, and historic preservation needs of our communities, our local economies, and quality of life where our constituents live, work, and recreate.”
“The parks, trails, forests, wildlife refuges, battlefields, historic sites, and working lands sustained by LWCF funding support an outdoor recreation and tourism sector that contributes a total of $1.06 trillion annually to the American economy, supporting 9.4 million jobs (1 out of every 15 jobs in the U.S.) that are vital to the nation’s recovery.”
“Recent polling has found that fully 85% of the American people say that Congress should honor its commitment to LWCF.”
Alabama– Rep. Spencer Bachus
Arkansas– Rep. Tim Griffin
Pennsylvania– Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, Rep. Jim Gerlach, Rep. Patrick Meehan
New York– Rep. Michael Grimm, Rep. Peter King, Rep. Richard Hanna, Rep. Chris Gibson, Rep. Tom Reed
New Jersey– Rep. Leonard Lance, Rep. Frank LoBiondo, Rep. Chris Smith,
Michigan–Rep. Dan Benishek
Montana–Rep. Steve Daines
North Carolina– Rep. Howard Coble, Rep. Walter Jones, Rep. Mark Meadows, Rep. George Holding, Rep. Richard Hudson
South Carolina–Rep. Mark Sanford
Ohio– Rep. Michael Turner
Illinois– Rep. Adam Kinzinger
California–Rep. Paul Cook
West Virginia– Rep. Shelley Moore Capito
Idaho– Rep. Mike Simpson
Wisconsin — Rep. Tom Petri
Washington– Rep. Dave Reichert
NOTE : the absence of Erik Paulsen, John Kline and Michele Bachmann’s name.
This probably should be a surprise … considering that The League of Conservation Voters graded 28 roll call votes, reporting Erik Paulsen at 7%, John Kline at 0%, and Michele Bachmann at 11%.
Yeah, Erik Paulsen has some cute kids … and a great image-shaper … but examine his votes … when he says Washington “must do more with less” that should be a warning bell … leading to the question, will he protect Social Security and Medicare when he won’t even advocate for clean water ?