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August 2nd, 2006:

Guest post: Nick Lampson

When Charles asked me to guest blog on his site while he was on vacation, I thought . . . vacation?? Wow. Must be nice. Listen, Kuffner, I have been fighting for Texas’s 22nd congressional district for a year and a half now–with no vacation! So while you’re living it up out on vacation somewhere . . . St. Andrews golf course, Marianas Islands . . . wherever, I’ll be right here in the Houston area writing your blog for you and trying to fit that little campaign thing I’m doing in there somewhere. And, frankly, I’m still not over the bloggers’ party at the state convention. Sure, I was treated well, but my staff was, let’s just say, “less than productive” the next day.

But speaking of the campaign, let me use this post to bring Off the Kuff readers up to speed on what’s been happening over at Lampson for Congress. While Charles was sitting in his cubicle at work and dreaming of Pina Coladas with Tom DeLay and Jack Abramoff, I was hard at work announcing my endorsement by the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club is the nation’s oldest and largest environmental organization, and I welcome their support. At a press conference I held to announce this endorsement, I discussed my commitment to energy independence. This is something I feel strongly is essential to our environment, our economy, and our national security. It’s an issue about which I am passionate, and, since I left Congress in 2005, I sit on the board of a company that makes bio-diesel from crops grown by American farmers.

Congress needs to do much more to encourage renewable energy like bio-diesel. This would reduce pollution. It would ensure that we no longer have to rely on oil supplies from the most unstable regions in the world. And, if Houston’s energy sector looks to the future and takes a leadership role in innovation and development, energy independence could mean high-tech jobs right here in our area. Plus, it will create a larger market for American grown crops and will allow the dwindling numbers of family farmers in this country to keep the farms, which have been in their families for several generations. You know, there are still farmers in rural Ft. Bend County, and we need to let them know we haven’t forgotten they’re working hard down there to preserve their way of life even in the face of rapid urban development. After all, farming in Ft. Bend County is how my grandparents got their start in this country after arriving from Italy.

Oil will be a part of filling our energy demand for the foreseeable future. But America is moving toward reducing her need for foreign oil from unstable regions. America’s leaders must make the commitment to fund research and development of renewable energy.

Now, I know some of you are more interested in politics than policy. So let me fill you in on what we’ve accomplished campaign-wise at Lampson for Congress. Thanks to the hard work of our volunteers and interns, we have contacted around 40,000 voters since the beginning of May. We have people knocking doors or making calls literally seven days a week. We are not waiting for the Republicans to untangle Tom DeLay’s sticky web of political gamesmanship. We are moving full-steam ahead delivering our message of cutting our deficits and debt; building a homeland security effort that actually pays for things like port security instead of focusing on color-coded charts and press conferences; renewing our commitment to education; ensuring health care is a right, not a privilege, for all Americans; and pushing for a solid plan that makes Iraqis responsible for Iraqi security so we can eventually bring our troops home.

I want to thank all of the people who have been helping us with this effort. And I want to thank the Texas bloggers who have been following this race and not allowing our opponents to get away with a campaign of false statements and misinformation. And, despite my green-eyed envy over his vacation, I want to thank Charles as well for allowing me to submit this entry. I finally feel I have arrived in the blogosphere!

Nick Lampson
Candidate for Congress
22nd Congressional District

(Note: The Muse attended the event at which Lampson was endorsed by the Sierra Clun, and has some pictures from it.)

Veterans rally for Harrell

You may recall the recent fact-challenged attack letter about Mary Beth Harrell that Rep. John Carter sent to constituents. Well, Harrell isn’t taking this lying down, and she’s got plenty of support for that. As Eye on Williamson reports, seven Democratic Congressional candidates from Texas, all of whom are veterans and members of the Fighting Dems, will be joining Harrell for a rally tomorrow in Georgetown. A press release on the rally is beneath the fold.