Winney backs energy production, Iraq War
Bondurant Republican begins 2nd campaign for seat in U.S. House.
By Noah Brenner, Jackson Hole, Wyo.
Date: April 16, 2008
Republican U.S. House candidate Bill Winney, of Bondurant, stopped in Jackson on Thursday, pushing his support for continuing the Iraq War, making the Bush tax cuts permanent, and continuing aggressive energy production on public lands.
It is Winney’s second consecutive run at the nomination. In 2006, he won 40 percent of the vote in the Republican primary and carried Teton County.
“I am a good Republican and adhere to the Republican values,” Winney said when asked why Teton County residents should vote for him. “A couple of the things most important in people’s minds – reducing government and reducing taxes – I believe in that.”
To that end, Winney would like to make the tax cuts passed under the Bush administration permanent.
“Tax cuts enable people to do more and grow the economy,” he said. “Business is looking at the Bush tax cuts and saying they are going to go away and they are already hedging their bets. We can make them permanent and that will already increase the confidence of private industry.”
Despite its deleterious affect on the country’s finances, Winney said we must continue our occupation of Iraq.
“The U.S. went in and made promises to people in the area and now the Democrats are just going to turn the lights out when they leave,” he said. “I am concerned that if we depart prematurely it will be seen as failure of courage of the American people.”
Winney has a son that has already served one tour in Iraq as a Marine, and will likely return for a second before the end of the year.
“I don’t look forward to him going into a war zone, but I am proud of what he is doing,” Winney said. “I have skin in the game so don’t say the things I just said lightly.”
A key to both a strong economy and a strong foreign policy is increasing domestic energy production, including oil and natural gas production from public lands such as the Wyoming Range. Winney said he remains unconvinced the Wyoming Range needs to be put off-limits to natural gas drilling, but industry should be required to use methods like directional drilling to minimize its footprint.
“Industry can do those kind of things,” he said. “It will affect the bottom line a little bit but it is better to have a bottom line than to be fenced out of it.”