The future of the energy industry is a primary concern in eastern Ohio. U.S. Senate candidate Bernie Moreno understands that, and joins the people of that region in championing its importance.
“Energy is extremely important to this part of the state and also to me,” Moreno said during a recent visit to the Ohio Valley. “It’s one of my top priorities, to make sure we unleash American energy and we become an energy dominant country – not just energy independent, but energy dominant.”
Moreno is slugging it out in a three-man Republican primary in Ohio for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Sherrod Brown. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose and state Sen. Matt Dolan of Chagrin Falls, near Cleveland.
A resident of the Cleveland suburb of Westlake, Moreno understands Ohio is a diverse state. Along with larger metropolitan areas like Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus, there are even more towns like Bellaire, Steubenville, Marietta and Martins Ferry.
Understanding the needs of all those areas is crucial, he said. And in this area, energy rises to the top of the list. To “unleash” American energy, as he says is his mission, the U.S. government must give energy companies “certainty.’
“We have to make certain that they understand that we’re not looking to end their business in a finite period of time,” Moreno said. “So, if I’m making an investment in energy – whether it’s energy exploration, drilling and refining, wherever the case may be – they know that over a long period of time, they’re not going to see a government that aims its regulatory arrows against them.”
Another subject Moreno sees as important to the region is a secure southern border of the United States. He said both human and drug trafficking are major problems that a more secure border should help solve. Moreno wants to declare drug cartels terrorist organizations and have the U.S. military work with Mexico to eliminate those cartels. He also wants to look for the underlying causes of why people are turning to drugs as a solution to their problems.
Moreno said much of the issue with the southern border could be fixed through policy.
“A one-sentence change in our asylum laws solves two-thirds of the problem,” he said. “Currently, you’re allowed to cross our border illegally, as long as you claim asylum when you get to the other side. So we change that and say if you cross our border, if you want to seek asylum, you have to cross at a designated port of entry. If you cross illegally, you forfeit your right for asylum for life. That would be the greatest deterrent that we can possibly do.”
Moreno is gearing up for what could be a fierce GOP primary battle, with many voters still on the fence. A late-July poll from Ohio Northern University had LaRose as the choice of 32.1% of those polled, with Dolan at 17.8% and Moreno at 7.3%, with 42.1% undecided. A USA Today/Suffolk poll from earlier in July had LaRose at 18.95%, Dolan at 13.68% and Moreno at 8.95% with 56.84% undecided.
While it’s a three-man race, Moreno said the GOP primary is a choice between two schools of thought. LaRose and Dolan, he said, are long-time politicians. Moreno has never before held political office. He came to the United States just before his fifth birthday with his family from Bogata, Colombia, and achieved success in private business, first through automobile dealerships and then through his blockchain technology company.
Moreno said his campaign is gaining momentum. His campaign raised $2.2 million in its first three months. He also has received endorsements from U.S. Sen. J.D. Vance, R-Ohio, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and former Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, among others.
Moreno considers his candidacy a true alternative, and one that would be the most formidable against Brown in the 2024 general election.
Source: Salem News