5th District Ratowitz: Democrats in Congress Failed to safeguard the Gulf Coast

From the Ratowitz for Congress campaign (5th District)…

David Ratowitz, Republican Candidate for Illinois’ 5th Congressional seat, demands accountability from Democrats in Congress for their failure to safeguard the Gulf Coast

U. S. Congressional Candidate, David Ratowitz (IL – 5), claims “Democrats in Congress have spent the last four years rehashing lost political fights of the past instead of governing 21st Century America. We have the capability to contain and minimize damage from an oil spill, Democrat failures to realistically address America’s energy policy are the cause of the current oil spill calamity.”

Chicago, IL, March 12, 2010 – Long time transparency and pro-liberty advocate Candidate for U. S. Congress from Illinois’ 5th Congressional District, David Ratowitz demands accountability from Congressional leaders.


An explosion on an offshore oil rig results in a catastrophic oil leak into the Gulf of Mexico threatens billions of dollars of fishing, tourism and agriculture along the Gulf Coast, a region still reeling from Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma. The advocates of big government now in power respond by vigorously doing…nothing. Democrat party leaders, swept into power on the waves of outrage over inadequate government response to a Gulf Coast tragedy , have spent four years rehashing political battles lost in the 1980’s and settling scores from twenty years ago, and have still not taken up the business of governing 21st Century America. It is May, 2010 and the Democrats have injected big government into all aspects of our lives and economy – except where it might actually belong.

As a Chicagoan who spent eight years living in New Orleans, LA and who endured Hurricane Katrina and the lengthy and difficult recovery from that disaster, I have a deep appreciation for the role the Gulf Coast plays in the American economy. The fisheries, beaches, ports, and oil rigs along the Gulf Coast are crucial to America’s economic health, food supply, infrastructure, and energy security. Four years after using a threat to the Gulf Coast to return to power, the Democrats have provided no solutions for these problems.

Many will revert to the old arguments: there must be either civilization or the environment and we must ban offshore drilling. This self-defeating argument creates false dichotomies between one industry and another, and between job security and environmental security. These arguments ignore existing technology and best practices that, if utilized, would allow the safe harvest of the vast petroleum resources off our Nations’ shores, ensure American energy security and safeguard those coastal zones critical to our national economy.

Many others will call for renewed public investment into speculative technologies that have not yet proven capable of producing cost effective energy. While many of these technologies show promise, recent history has proven that public finance of “green energy” follows the traditional model of government spending: cronyism and waste. America must develop the capability to safely harvest the energy we have to provide time for these new energy technologies to evolve in economically viable forms.

Fortunately, there is a solution. We can ensure the safe harvest of our offshore oil resources if our federal government does two things: 1) equip the United States Coast Guard with the ability to rapidly respond to offshore oil leaks; and 2) enforce personal property, specifically the obligation of property owners, such as British Petroleum, to use their property in a responsible manner that does not infringe on the property rights of others.

The United States Congress has a constitutional duty to protect our shores and regulate maritime trade. The technology and techniques exist to address oil leaks such as the one currently in the Gulf. All that is required is responsible Congressional leadership willing to focus proactively on our nation’s energy needs and allocate resources to equip and train the U. S. Coast Guard, an organization that exists for this very purpose, to respond to these crises.

The owners and operators of offshore oil rigs must be held accountable for their failure to operate safely. This is no different than the owner of any other business or property. Congress has exclusive authority over maritime matters and the failure to have addressed this foreseeable disaster is a failure of our current Congressional leadership.

Four years ago the current leadership in Congress won their majority by campaigning on the need to pay attention to the critical region along America’s Gulf Coast. For four years the Congressional leadership has refought battles they lost in the past instead of focusing on the problems of 21st Century America. Today, their failure is costing the Gulf Coast region dearly. Tomorrow those costs will travel up the Mississippi and become ours to bear.

I say again, it is time for new leadership in Washington, DC.

Entrepreneur, Army veteran and activist David Ratowitz is the Republican challenger for Illinois Congressional District 5 representative. The Ratowitz for Congress campaign platform advocates a limited federal government, across-the-board tax cuts, fiscal discipline, accountability, free markets and individual liberty. Learn more at www.ratowitzforcongress.com.

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