GOP hopefuls for 8th District blame Democratic energy policies for inflation

Republican hopefuls for the 8th Congressional District currently represented by Democrat Raja Krishnamoorthi of Schaumburg recently weighed in on what they consider the causes of and potential solutions to skyrocketing inflation.

GOP candidates Chris Dargis of Palatine, Peter Kopsaftis of South Barrington and Phillip Owen Wood of Carol Stream joined a virtual interview with the Daily Herald. Fellow candidates Karen Kolodziej of Itasca and Chad Koppie of Gilberts were invited but did not attend.

Kopsaftis was the first to suggest further work on the Keystone Pipeline, increased fracking and other technologies as the solution to the energy aspect of inflation, which affects the price of other products like food.

"The inflation didn't start from Ukraine or from anything else, it started when Mr. Biden put in the different laws to discourage energy independence," Kopsaftis said. "The pandemic did have something to do with it; however, it wasn't the only thing. It is the changing of the regulations that has contributed."

Dargis put blame not only on the shutdown of the Keystone Pipeline project but ongoing Democratic policies.

"We've seen Democrats in Washington spend recklessly from the moment they got in office, lining the pockets of special interests and the politically connected and giving us the highest inflation we've had in 40 years," he said.

Dargis, who favors greater use of nuclear power to enhance the nation's energy independence, finds particular fault in the current Democratic discussion of student loan forgiveness.

"It's ridiculous, and on top of that, it will fuel even more inflation," he said.

Wood said he concurred with his opponents' answers but had some more of his own.

"I'd say we need to stop printing so much money. We need to stop spending and giving away so much money," Wood said. "We're sitting on just a sea of oil. We've got a lot of gas that's accessible. And I don't think we just need to become energy independent, we need to become energy dominant. I mean, we've made Putin's one of the richest families in the world. We certainly funded the OPEC nations and send so much money around the world."

Wood added, all the policies contributing to energy prices being so high ultimately are taxing the average citizen.

The winner of the June 28 primary will face the winner of the Democratic primary in November. Krishnamoorthi is being challenged by Junaid Ahmed of South Barrington.

Though the 8th District's borders are shifting somewhat for the 2022 elections, it will remain roughly centered in Schaumburg and include areas of northwest Cook, northeast DuPage and northeast Kane counties.

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