Monday, May 7, 2012

Round and Round They Go

by: Lynn Costello

Trent Lott
Trent Lott entered congress in 1968 as an administrative assistant, was elected to the Senate in 1988, became Senate Majority Leader in 1996 and resigned in 2007.  John Breaux served as a member of the House of Representatives from 1972 to 1987 and in the Senate from 1987 to 2005. They became The Breaux Lott Leadership Group (BLLG) and in July 2010 were acquired by Patton Boggs LLP combining the nation’s highest revenue producing public policy law firm with one of the most recognizable strategic consulting and lobbying firms in public policy.

Today, according to Heritage Foundation, Trent Lott is lobbying for the Senate to ratify a treaty that would undermine American sovereignty and damage the country economically.  The treaty I refer to is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (aka, the Law of the Sea Treaty) which was first hammered out in 1982 and reflects the 1970’s “new economic order” ideology that viewed ocean riches as the “common heritage of mankind.”  It establishes a bureaucracy to redistribute the wealth of the deep seabed and the extended continental shelf.

What is curious about his lobbying efforts is that as a Senator Lott was vehemently opposed to this treaty saying it would create a “U.N. on steroids” that “would undermine U.S. military operations…and impair navigational rights” by subjecting maritime disputes to U.N. authority.  “If the Senate ratifies the Law of the Sea Treaty,” he said in 2007, “we will cede our national sovereignty – both militarily and economically.”

Were the U.S. to join it would have to share with developing nations any royalty revenue generated on its continental shelf beyond the 200 nautical mile mark.  The International Seabed Authority would decide just how these revenues are distributed.  The U.S. by itself would have no veto over its decisions.

Trent Lott, a Republican and John Breaux, a Democrat are not the first to trade in their experience in “serving the people” for financial rewards and they probably won’t be the last.  Neither is it unusual for John Breaux, Jr. and Chester Trent Lott, Jr. to be working in their father’s firm.  Power and money are coveted in our Nation’s capital where allegiance carries a price.

Since 1884 those elected to Congress affirm the following:

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter:  So help me God.”

How far removed are we from those who first served pledging “our lives, our fortunes, our sacred honor.” 

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