Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Stewartville Star: Davis says U.S. should drill for more oil offshore, in ANWR

Candidate for U.S. House visits Stewartville
Mark Peterson Editor

Monday, July 07, 2008

The United States can become much more energy independent by drilling for oil in areas Congress has deemed off limits, Republican First Congressional District U.S. Rep. candidate Brian Davis said last week.

Davis will face Republican state Sen. Dick Day in a Sept. 9 primary to determine who will run against Democratic incumbent Tim Walz in this November's general election. Davis spoke about his energy policy differences with Walz during a visit to the offices of the Stewartville STAR last week.

Up to 100 billion barrels of oil are available in offshore areas near the United States, and many billion barrels more could be found in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), Davis said.

Drilling for more oil at home would decrease America's dependence on foreign oil and improve the U.S. economy, Davis said. However, Democrats in Congress have blocked proposed increases in domestic oil production, voting down proposals to drill for oil in offshore areas and in ANWR, Davis said.

"It's environmental radicalism that we're paying for at the gas pump," he said.

Davis criticized Walz's record of taxing and spending, saying that Walz ranks 394th among the 435 members of Congress on the Club For Growth Scale, which rates each lawmaker's votes on economic growth issues."Washington taxes too much and spends it all and then some," Davis said.

Davis, a physician at the Mayo Clinic since 1996, has called for a national policy to address the overabundance of malpractice lawsuits against doctors."Malpractice is driving doctors and hospitals out of business, which hurts our access to quality care," he said.

He is also calling for health care reform, saying that healthy individuals should be allowed to take their health insurance policies with them from job to job, across state lines or into retirement.

Also, people who make choices to live healthier lifestyles should be rewarded with lower insurance premiums, he said.

Davis said he believes the U.S. must stay on the offense against radical Islam in Iraq and Afghanistan, but he said he would favor allowing the Iraqi and Afghan people the opportunity to vote in referendums to determine whether they want American soldiers to stay.

"It's apparent that the surge has worked," he said. "It has given the government of Iraq a chance to become more stable."Davis describes himself as pro-life, stating in a campaign brochure that he will always vote in Congress to protect life and emphasizing that he will never backtrack from that position.

"We need to respect life and protect life," he said. More than 1 million babies are aborted each year in the United States, Davis said. Even so, some candidates look at abortion as just another political issue to the polled, spun and used in an election campaign, he said."It was once said that a civilization will be judged by how it treats those in the dawn of life and the sunset of life," he wrote in a campaign brochure. "I agree."

Davis said he is against embryonic stem cell research, saying that scientists can move closer to finding cures for various diseases without destroying human embryos in the process.

He defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Marriage, he said, is a fundamental building block of society."If civil unions are same-sex marriages by another name, then I am opposed to them," he said.

The California Supreme Court's recent decision to overturn the vote of the people and allow same-sex marriage is "a travesty," he said."If given the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment on this subject, I would vote in favor of defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman," he said.

Davis has put more than 40,000 miles on his car since he began campaigning for Walz's seat. As of last week, he had marched in 21 parades and planned to take part in Stewartville's Fourth of July Summerfest parade.

Davis earned a bachelor of science degree in nuclear engineering at the University of Illinois and worked for three years as an engineer in the electric power industry.

He and his wife Lori, an emergency medicine physician at the Mayo Clinic, have four children.

(Posted 7/13)