Ron Johnson: On Great Lakes oil drilling: “I think we have to, get the oil where it is.” … Oil Drilling Is a “Wedge Issue,” not an environmental issue.
By Bill Christofferson in UppityWisconsin
Ron, Ron, Ron.
What are we to think?
Ron Johnson tells WisPolitics in mid-June, when asked about Great Lakes drilling, that we have to get the oil where it is.
Weeks of criticism ensue. Bloggers write about it, his opponent criticizes him, the media cover it. Johnson says nothing.
Russ Feingold makes a TV commercial highlighting Johnson’s statement.
Hours before the commercial is to begin airing, Johnson issues a press release saying he opposes drilling in the Great Lakes — and always has (!)
Feingold’s ad airs.
Johnson runs his own false ad trying to make it appear Feingold opposed a ban on Great Lakes drilling, when in fact he has been a leader to ban drilling.
Which brings us to today’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
On Friday, Johnson said he did not think he ever heard the Great Lakes portion of the question. He said he waited until the day before Feingold’s ad blitz to clarify his position because “I just didn’t think it was an issue . . . and I never said I’d support it.”
…Johnson said the campaign should have immediately issued a news release after the Wispolitics interview to clarify his position. He says is opposed to any drilling in the Great Lakes.
He “doesn’t think” he ever heard the Great Lakes part of the question? Once more, here is the question and his response;
Asked, “Do you want to open up more of the United States – the continental United States – to drilling. I mean, would you support drilling like in the Great Lakes for example, if there was oil found there, or using more exploration in Alaska, in ANWR, those kinds of things?” Johnson said:
“Yeah. You know, the bottom line is that we are an oil-based economy. There’s nothing we’re going to do to get off of that for many, many years, so I think we have to just be realistic and recognize that fact. And I think we have to get the oil where it is, but we need to do it responsibly.”
If Johnson really was against Great Lakes drilling from the beginning, and his staff waited a month to clarify that, he should fire them all and start over.
That is simply not a credible explanation.
Ron Johnson, the would-be “non-politician,” turns out to be a typical political, shucking and jiving, talking out of both sides of his mouth, changing with the wind, covering up his real opinions, willing to say anything and blame others for his problems.
Isn’t that refreshing?