The House of Representatives voted 243-179 to lift the President’s moratorium on offshore drilling. Just in case anyone was not clear on the purpose of the bill, it was called “The Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act.” The bill collected 21 Democrat votes, plus all but 9 Republicans.
The bill “requires the Interior Department to set a production goal of three million barrels of oil per day for its 2012-2017 leasing plan,” a goal to be reached by holding “lease sales off the coast of Southern California, in the Arctic Ocean, off Alaska’s Bristol Bay, and in the Atlantic Ocean from Maine to North Carolina,” according to a Fox News summary.
Republicans say the bill would create 1.2 million jobs, and lower the price of oil. The Congressional Budget Office anticipates $800 million in revenue from lease sales over the next ten years.
Reuters quotes Representative Doc Hastings (R-WA), sponsor of the bill, saying its passage would “send a strong signal to the world markets that the U.S. is serious about producing our resources and bringing more production online.”
The White House, which opposes few things as passionately as domestic oil exploration, claims the bill will “undercut the administration’s efforts to shore up safety and environmental standards for drilling as a result of last year’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico,” as the Politico put it. Apparently the American people will never stop paying for that BP oil spill.
As expected, the Democrats did nothing except whine about oil company profits and tax breaks. They tried to add language to the bill that would have wiped out the tax incentives for oil companies, which would have gotten us to $5.00 gas in no time.
“The Republicans say Big Oil needs these subsidies as an incentive to drill and yet for the first quarter of this year, the big five oil companies had profits of over $30 billion,” wailed Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. It’s imperative that you pour more of your hard-earned money into your fuel tank, so the Democrats can whittle those oil company profits down a bit.
Isn’t it funny how all of the high-minded “fairness” principles of liberals require you to suffer now, in the hopes that some rich guy you’ve never met might become mildly uncomfortable later? Don’t worry, Nancy Pelosi and her colleagues have access to plenty of luxurious transportation, so they’ll be just fine.
Fortunately, the Democrats were stopped before they could drop another massive price increase on American motorists. Unfortunately, the Senate Democrats will stop the Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act. American energy independence must await the removal of Democrats from the Senate and White House.