Joe Kennedy & Citgo
The following text is from U.S. Congressman Connie Mack Congressman (FL-14), Chairman, Western Hemisphere Subcommittee, Prepared Remarks for CPAC 2011
Saturday, February 12, 2011, Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington, DC as posted on his website:
“’Thugocrat’ Chavez has an Accomplice in the U.S. – Joe Kennedy”
February 12, 2011
WASHINGTON – Interrupted by applause or ovations more than twenty times today in Washington at the 2011 CPAC Conference, Congressman Connie Mack criticized the Obama Administration’s cavalier approach to Latin American threats in our hemisphere, pledging to get to the bottom of security failures by the Administration, especially when it comes to the growing threat of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. Additionally, Mack blasted former Massachusetts Congressman Joe Kennedy for his role in Chavez’s propaganda campaign in the US, calling Kennedy a “disgrace.”
On Joe Kennedy’s Pro-Chavez Ad Campaign…
‘If Joe Kennedy wants to show he is really concerned about ‘some’ things Chavez is doing, he can see to it that the Boston CITGO sign is turned off. He can see to it that the Fenway Park CITGO sign is covered up until freedom and democracy return to Venezuela.’
On Obama Administration’s’ failures in Latin America…
“Chavez wants to work as one with Ahmadinejad. We ought to treat him the way we treat Ahmadinejad. No more happy handshakes at world conferences. No ignoring the menace of what Chavez has called the Iranian-Venezuelan ‘Axis of Unity.’”
On the growing threat of Hugo Chavez….
“Like Ahmadinejad, he has at his disposal the rights, privileges, and resources of a state. A very, very wealthy state.”
“And so, years ago, Chavez launched a silent war on America and all that America stands for. The world of freedom. The world of democracy. The world of enterprise. The world of law. He is against that world. We are for it. We must act to preserve, protect, and defend it.”
“Let’s be clear about who Hugo Chavez is. He believes in intimidation and manipulation. He rules with an iron fist. As I said, he is a ‘thugocrat’.”
For the entire speech text:
The following is open letter from U.S. Congressman Connie Mack to Joe Kennedy:
Joe Kennedy’s Pro-Chavez Ad Campaign Not a “Profile In Courage”
Mack Calls on Kennedy to Cease Pro-Chavez Ads Immediately
WASHINGTON – Calling Venezuelan President Hugo Chaves a “world-class dictator,” Congressman Connie Mack (FL-14) today sent the following letter to former Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy to immediately cease his pro-Chavez ad campaign for CITCO.
The text is as follows:
February 7, 2011
The Honorable Joseph P. Kennedy II
Citizens Energy Corporation
88 Black Falcon Avenue
Center Lobby, Suite # 342
Boston, MA 02210
Dear Congressman Kennedy:
I am writing to you again, as I did in 2007, for you to immediately cease your new ad campaign in support of Venezuelan world-class dictator Hugo Chavez, a man who suppresses the basic human rights of his people and has recently formed a strategic military alliance with Iran which threatens the security of the U.S. in our own backyard. What you are doing is disgraceful, shameful and against the interests of the American people.
At a time when the world is demonstrating unrest with dictators such as Chavez, you are allowing your name and image to be used to cover over the anti-American interests of Chavez. I would think you, of all people, would also not let yourself be duped by Chavez.
Only you can answer the question as to why: for the money, for the craving for the spotlight? I would imagine there would be many avenues at your disposal to help the needy instead of allying yourself with Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
In this month of February alone, Hugo Chavez is shipping two cargoes of gasoline to Iran in direct violation of Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Accountability and Disinvestment Act of 2010, so in effect what your campaign purports to do is turn a blind eye to U.S. law and use the profits of the sale of gas to Iran to fund your pro-Chavez campaign and line your pockets. This is certainly not a Profile In Courage.
As Chairman of the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee I will soon be calling for a joint State Department/Treasury Department taskforce to investigate illegal activity engaged in by Venezuelan officials and Venezuelan owned PDVSA’s involvement in Iran’s energy sector. During the course of these investigations it would be informative for the American people to know how much Iranian money is being spent for your services and the ad campaign in support of Hugo Chavez.
The American people and I anxiously await your response.
Member of Congress
Please know that bloggers advocates to restore democracy in Venezuela have contacted former U.S. Congressman Joe Kennedy since he started the infamous Citgo commercial:
The last several weeks I have been outraged watching Joe Kennedy talking about Hugo Chavez on national television. I was ready to write about it on this blog, but reconsidered after the passing of R. Sargent Shriver. I did not want to add more pain and embarrassment to the Kennedy family.
Sargent Shriver, founding director of Peace Corps, dies at 95
My blog is: http://maruangarita.blogspot.com/