Candidate Interview: Public Service Commission Candidate Blair Thoreson
This week I’m interviewing as many of the NDGOP candidates for statewide office as I can get on the phone. Over the weekend I posted an interview with gubernatorial candidate Paul Sorum. Today I have PSC candidate, and state legislator, Blair Thoreson.
One of the most interesting comments from Thoreson during the interview was about his view of the PSC’s job. In addition to believing the PSC should be an advocate for the state’s citizens, he also believes that the PSC should be a watchdog against over-regulation. It’s not often you hear a man campaigning to be a regulator talk about protecting against too much regulation.
I take that as a good sign.
Another concern he noted was North Dakota’s ability to export energy to other states. Currently North Dakota is suing Minnesota over what amounts to an unconstitutional tariff on coal-fired energy imported into the state. Thoreson says he sees the PSC has a role in protecting North Dakota’s rights in a case like that.
Thoreson says he has a great deal of respect for his competitor for the PSC nomination, state Senator Randy Christmann, but that his experience working in the private sector with telecommunications issues (which also fall under the purview of the PSC) as well as his years of service in government give him the edge.
Thoreson also commented on the lawsuit filed by the Dakota Resource Council and the Sierra Club against current commissioners Brian Kalk and Kevin Cramer. He dismissed the charges, saying that the political contributions in question were made legally and disclosed appropriately to the government.
I hope to have an interview with Senator Christmann posted later this week.Tags: blair thoreson, Brian Kalk, dakota resource council, election 2012, Kevin Cramer, NDGOP, North Dakota News, public service commissioner, sierra club