GAS PRICES/TAXES -- (House of Representatives - June 04, 2008)
Mr. Speaker, the American people are sick and tired of high gas prices, high taxes and unnecessary regulation on our lands. As an ardent capitalist, I believe that the marketplace, unencumbered by government regulation, by high taxes, is the best way to control quality, quantity and cost of all goods and services.
The price of gasoline is not immune to market forces. Cutting taxes and reining in the Federal Government is fundamental to returning power to the U.S. citizens, and to promote economic growth. We should support our free market by eliminating unnecessary regulation, unfair taxes, and promoting the economic growth that we so desperately need. I say, heavy taxation is bad representation.
Speaker Pelosi promised to lower energy prices at the beginning of the 110th Congress. Yet, today the average price of gasoline has gone up $1.65 per gallon, a nearly 71 percent increase. The Pelosi premium is now costing the average American $3.98 per gallon of gasoline. And in my district, the 10th Congressional District in Georgia, it's over $4 a gallon.
Congressional Democrats talk about our addiction to foreign oil, yet they refuse to allow access to American oil and our gas supplies that are necessary to cure this so-called addiction. This is as idiotic as asking Shaquille O'Neal to play basketball on his knees, or Alex Rodriguez hitting a baseball left-handed.
America has been blessed with abundant talent, a tremendous quantity of natural resources. Yet we continue to operate with our knees on the ground and hitting from the wrong side of the plate. Unfortunately, this is not a game that Americans can afford to play.
Developing American oil and gas will help bring prices down and help break the stranglehold on energy that hostile countries in the Middle East enjoy. Yet Congressional Democrats continue to refuse any development whatsoever. We should not be hesitant to tap into our abundant natural resources, especially at a time when energy costs are so high.
Alaska's ANWR is estimated to contain between 5.7 and 16 billion barrels of oil. Yet House Democrats have opposed ANWR exploration 86 percent of the time, while House Republicans have supported responsible and environmentally sound development 91 percent of the time.
The Outer Continental Shelf, OCS, is estimated to contain 19 billion barrels of oil and 84 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Yet House Democrats have opposed developing the OCS 83 percent of the time, while House Republicans have supported responsible and environmentally sound development 81 percent of the time. Today we are drilling for ice on Mars, but we cannot drill for oil in America.
America contains enough oil shale to supply all our needs for over two centuries, estimated at over 2 trillion barrels. Yet House Democrats have opposed oil shale exploration 86 percent of the time, while House Republicans have supported responsible and environmentally sound development 90 percent of the time.
America hasn't built a new oil refinery in decades. It would do little good to increase development of our domestic supplies of oil if we do not have the refinery capability and capacity to quickly convert this fuel into a usable form. Yet House Democrats have opposed increasing refinery capacity 96 percent of the time, while House Republicans have supported responsible and environmentally sound development 97 percent of the time. We need to streamline getting oil refineries on-line.
America is the Saudi Arabia of coal. We must promote this abundant resource by promoting coal-to-liquids technology. Yet House Democrats have opposed the promotion of coal-to-liquids technology 78 percent of the time, while House Republicans have supported responsible and environmentally sound development 97 percent of the time.
What is the opposition's solution to this national emergency? They have passed a so-called energy bill that's a non-energy bill.
Energy is the lifeblood of the American economy. We need to develop our own natural resources and drill for oil now.