As you are reading this, 60 miles off the coast of Key West, Florida, the Chinese have the green light to drill for oil and gas in order to lower energy costs back at home. Meanwhile, 1,210 miles in the opposite direction, Democrats inside the U.S. Capitol continue to block our country from conducting environmentally-safe oil and gas exploration in similar areas off U.S. coasts — and on U.S. lands, for that matter.
That’s right; rather than making the most of our own vast American energy resources, the Democrats in charge of Congress would rather increase our costly dependence on foreign sources of energy — even though the Chinese are taking matters into their own hands and doing so in our own backyard. Does this mean congressional Democrats trust the Chinese with access to nearby oil and gas more than they trust Americans? And does this mean the Democratic Majority in Congress believes the Chinese have greater capacity and ingenuity than do Americans when it comes to helping themselves access more energy resources?
As the Democrat-controlled Congress continues to sit on its hands while consumers face of $4 per gallon gasoline, these are perfectly fair questions to ask. After all, gas prices have risen by nearly $1.75 per gallon since Democrats took control of Congress last year — that’s an average increase of a dime per gallon per month. And even though America has a wealth of natural energy resources that could enter our supply lines to lower fuel costs and send the rest of the world a message that our days of energy dependency are over, Democrats have chosen instead to bow to their masters on the radical Left fringe of American politics and keep those resources under lock-and-key.
Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), and nearly every single one of their Democratic colleagues in Congress have indicated their intent to keep holding America’s rich oil and gas resources hostage, even as the price at the pump surges higher. That means until America develops newer and better energy technologies – technologies that enjoy support on both sides of the aisle — U.S. consumers will grow even more dependent on costly foreign sources of energy.
In fact, in a rare moment of candor from the Democratic Majority, Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) admitted in a March 2007 House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee hearing that he favors a policy that requires America to “import as much [energy] as we possibly can.” And his Empire State colleague, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), did him one better by practically begging Saudi Arabia to increase oil exports to the U.S. in a speech on the Senate floor last month — even as he opposes greater oil exploration here at home. Spectacles like these not only defy logic, but they also have become indicative of the Democrats’ approach on energy: rely on our competitors to do the work radical environmentalists won’t let America do on its own.
Three weeks ago, House Republicans offered a comprehensive plan to lower gas prices by harnessing new technologies to help break our reliance on traditional forms of energy and unlocking the vast American energy supply held hostage by congressional Democrats and their radical Leftist allies. Since we introduced our plan, momentum has continued to build in favor of our “all of the above” approach to solving America’s energy crisis.
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich yesterday announced that his “Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less” petition has already gathered a half million signatures from Americans demanding that Congress allow immediately domestic drilling for oil and gas to help bring down surging energy costs. Another online petition supported by a coalition of grassroots group has gathered tens of thousands more signatures demanding the same. And here on Capitol Hill, Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.) earlier this week filed a formal House petition to force Democratic leaders to schedule a vote on the No More Excuses Energy Act (H.R. 3089), legislation authored by Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Tex.) to increase U.S. energy production and invest in alternative sources of energy.
With gas prices rising further each and every day, American families have a long, hot, and very costly summer ahead of them. Republicans will continue to press for our comprehensive energy plan to be brought to the House floor, and we’ll hold the Democrats accountable if they block it. But to do so, we need your help. Sign the online petitions. Tell your neighbors to do the same. Call Members of Congress to demand that they sign the Walberg “No More Excuses” petition to force Speaker Pelosi to schedule a vote on more American energy production.
Changing the direction of American energy policy is no easy task, particularly with radicals on the Left demanding that their Democratic allies in charge of Congress continue to hold our domestic resources hostage. But the further our energy costs rise, both at the pump and in our homes, the more apparent it will become that this is clearly a fight worth having.