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Obama Sets Goal Of Importing Less Oil Yet His Admin Prevents Domestic Production And Encourages Imports From Brazil

March 30th, 2011 by mopns · No Comments

The Washington Post reports, “President Obama on Wednesday called Wednesday for a one-third cut in oil imports by 2020, part of a plan he says will reduce U.S. dependence on foreign petroleum. . . . Most facets of his proposals are familiar. . . . Obama also urged oil companies to make greater use of the federal leases both onshore and offshore to prop up domestic oil output.”

Speaking on the Senate floor this morning, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said that he was wary of rhetoric from Democrats about energy while they stymie domestic energy production. He said, “Tell a Democrat in Washington that gas prices are too high, and, as if on cue, they’ll throw together a speech or a press conference to suggest that we open an underground oil reserve that was created to deal with calamities, not market pressures; they’ll take you on a tour of some alternative car plant that promises to have one of its $100,000 prototypes to market 25 years down the road; or they’ll quietly release some report to the media about how energy companies aren’t working hard enough to extract oil — while schizophrenically claiming American reserves are minuscule and that more production isn’t the solution. This last item is a perennial favorite of our friends on the other side. The idea here is to somehow blame energy companies for not producing enough energy on their own. What Democrats don’t mention, however, is that a drilling lease is nothing more than an agreement with the government that a company has a right to explore for oil or gas in a certain area, not a guarantee that they’ll find it. And they never see fit to mention that most of the area that could be leased is effectively off limits — thanks to the red tape factory Democrats operate here in Washington.”

McConnell explained, “Over the past two years, the administration has undertaken what can only be described as a war on American energy. It’s cancelled dozens of drilling leases. It’s declared a moratorium on drilling off the Gulf Coast. It’s increased permit fees. It has prolonged public comment periods. In short, it’s done just about everything it can to keep our own energy sector from growing. As a result, thousands of U.S. workers have lost their jobs, as companies have been forced to look elsewhere for a better business climate.”

 

In his speech, the president said, “I’m setting a new goal: . . .  When I was elected to this office, America imported 11 million barrels of oil a day.  By a little more than a decade from now, we will have cut that by one-third.” But Leader McConnell pointed out, “[J]ust last week he told Brazilians that he hopes America becomes a major customer of Brazilian oil. Well, which is it?”

In fact, President Obama’s stated desire for America to become one of Brazil’s “best customers” garnered plenty of bipartisan criticism. Democrat Sen. Mark Begich of Alaska said, “President Obama didn’t have to go all the way to Brazil to find a ‘new, safe, and stable’ source of oil … Energy opportunities for the U.S. are right here in Alaska. We have to stop talking about increasing domestic production and actually invest in home-grown jobs.” And The Washington Post editorialized, “As for offshore drilling, Mr. Obama’s enthusiasm for punching holes in the ocean floor off Brazil is hard to reconcile with his decision, announced Dec. 1, to keep the waters off the East and West coasts and the eastern Gulf of Mexico off-limits to exploration indefinitely.”

And this whole time the administration has been cancelling drilling leases, imposing a moratorium on Gulf Coast drilling, and encouraging imports from Brazil, it’s preventing job creation here in America. Indeed, CNN Money pointed out in February, “In Louisiana alone, 320,000 depend on the oil and gas industry for work.” And former President Bill Clinton said recently there are “ridiculous delays in permitting when our economy doesn’t need it.”

As Leader McConnell said, “The guy who’s trying to make ends meet wants to know what you’re going to do for him today, not 24 years from now. But, of course, the administration doesn’t have anything to say to that guy, because the administration’s energy policy isn’t really aimed at him. If it were, then the administration wouldn’t be locking down domestic energy sources. It wouldn’t be looking to pass new regulations through the EPA that will impose a national energy tax on every business large and small. It wouldn’t be telling our allies in Brazil that while it’s great that they’ve found oil off their coast, those who want to search for oil off our coasts and on our mainland can’t. And it wouldn’t be telling job creators in the energy industry to go look elsewhere.”

Related:

Rasmussen Reports: Americans Strongly Reject Mileage Tax, Gas Tax Hike

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