Our one-time Kennedy puppet adds venality to his other sins
His incompetence may have allowed the "second" Amy Bishop murders
By Walter Brooks
For the last decade our former United States Congressman William Delahunt hounded Cape Wind with the most aggressive, inflammatory fear-mongering opposition against offshore wind.
Amazingly, Delahunt’s relentless opposition to Cape Wind even led him in 2002 to oppose the prospect of 500 new manufacturing jobs to Quincy’s Fore River Shipyard in his own hometown.
At that time, GE was interested in getting into the offshore wind manufacturing business and announced with Cape Wind they would supply the project with its turbines.
GE held meetings with then-Mayor Phelan about building a new offshore wind turbine factory at the Fore River Shipyard in Quincy that would create 500 manufacturing jobs as described in the 2002 Patriot Ledger article, ‘new idea blows into Quincy’.
Jobs didn't matter
But GE officials bracingly discovered firsthand at a public hearing in Quincy that Congressman Delahunt was prepared to run them out of town. The jobs didn’t matter; their connection with Cape Wind landed the GE officials with Delahunt’s open contempt and hostility in his abrasive line of questioning.
That contributed not only to GE’s losing interest in Quincy, but in their eventual backing away from even getting into the offshore wind manufacturing market so that years later when Cape Wind finally selected Siemens to provide the turbines there were no domestic manufacturers of offshore wind turbines.
Delahunt’s relentless opposition to Cape Wind may have played well among some of the waterfront summer Cape crowd but didn’t work nearly as well when he was off-Cape. At a publicity stunt he did with Joe Kennedy II in 2005 delivering home heating oil from Venezuela to a needy south shore family, Delahunt was confronted by Jon Keller of WBZ TV 4 who asked him, “How do you take a bow for this when you oppose Cape Wind”? Delahunt just stammered and changed the subject.
During his last ten years on the public dole he railed against government incentives for offshore wind, but he earmarked and tapped into federal money for wind turbines that would be much closer to shore than Cape Wind, and got paid off by the town of Hull for doing so.
Backroom stealth amendments
The darkest hour of Bill Delahunt’s crusade against Cape Wind was in his working with Republican Congressman Don Young to slip language into a Coast Guard Reauthorization Act during the Conference Committee that would have killed Cape Wind by requiring a large setback requirement for offshore wind turbines from boating channels or ferry routes that would have cut into Cape Wind’s footprint on Horseshoe Shoal in three directions.
The language was egregious in two respects, it would have been by far the most restrictive setback requirement in the world and it was being added at the last possible minute in the Bill’s passage in Congress so that it was never considered by the House or Senate Committee’s that had worked on the Bill.
So ensconced was Delahunt in this backroom effort that when an editorial writer with the Washington Post contacted Don Young’s office to ask why an Alaskan Republican was pushing language designed to thwart an offshore wind farm in Nantucket Sound, Young’s office instructed her to instead contact Delahunt’s office because they had more information. Ultimately, the Washington Post, Washington Times, New York Times, Boston Globe, Hartford Courant, Providence Journal, Falmouth Enterprise, Cape Cod Today, Patriot Ledger, and many other publications would editorialize against the Young amendment along with the nation’s environmental, labor, health and business organizations and a general public outcry that led to the language being stripped in a rare ‘Manger’s Amendment’ before the bill went to a final floor vote.
There is more than hypocrisy here
While the Young Amendment battle was still raging, a newspaper article reported Delahunt as being ‘pleased by’ the language. Ironically, Delahunt’s now benefactor, the Town of Hull, took a very different view. In a February, 2006 letter submitted to the House and Senate Conference Committee Chairmen, and copied to Congressman Delahunt, the Town of Hull Municipal Light Plant wrote about their offshore wind farm demonstration project plans (now championed by Delahunt) warning that Young’s language would be “highly detrimental” to Hull.
As to why Republican Alaskan and oil champion would get involved in this fight in the first place, that was answered by former CEO of the Allliance to Protect Nantucket Sound Charles Vinick who later explained to the Cape Cod Voice that it was oil and coal billionaire Bill Koch’s lobbyist who had secured the meeting to brief Don Young on the ‘navigation dangers’ of Cape Wind.
As a member of the congressional committees, he used his connections the minute he left office to set up his own Public Relations firm and represent the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe in their efforts to get a casino, and got a annual pay-off of $140,000 from the tribe.
Delahunt damaged Massachusetts citizens' health, economy and environment by sabotaging and delaying cleaner air for Cape Cod which has some of the worse air quality in America due to the fossil fuel generating power plant downwind of the Cape.
And for years the worst kept secret on Cape Cod was that Bill Delahunt was fronting Ted Kennedy’s fight against Cape Wind in Washington, D.C.
The Benedict Arnold of the Massachusetts Democratic Party
Bill Keating is an honest, law and order man, and Bill Delahunt is something else.Mr. Delahunt has been on the public dole his entire lifetime, first in the Coast Guard 1963-1971, then a Rep. on Beacon Hill 1973–75, followed by District Attorney for Norfolk County 1975–1996 and finally as a U.S. Congressman 1997 – 2011.
His entire adult livelihood for nearly forty years has been a gift from the Democratic Party of Massachusetts, and he now rewards his own party by conniving to unseat his own successor, and every newsman or woman in the state and D.C. knows why - Bill Keating is an honest, law and order man, and Delahunt is something else.
Delahunt jumps the shark
On Tuesday, the Political website AllGov reported:
"In what may be the first of its kind, a congressman who once earmarked money for a local alternative energy project is financially benefiting from the very same project, now that he has left office.
William Delahunt (D-Massachusetts) served in the House of Representatives for 14 years. Less than two months after leaving office in January 2011, he founded a lobbying company called the Delahunt Group. He had no problem finding clients, starting with the casino-seeking Mashpee Wampanoag tribe, which had previously been represented by convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff. While in office, Delahunt had arranged earmarks worth $400,000 for the tribe.
Delahunt also secured a contract with the Cape Cod Commercial Hook Fisherman’s Association, for whom, in 2010, he had helped arrange a federal loan.
But for Delahunt the big bucks are coming from a wind energy research project in the town of Hull, Massachusetts, to which he directed $1.7 million in taxpayer money. Today, the Delahunt Group is being paid $15,000 a month by the project’s leadership to help it continue its development.