MS. GLICK: Ahead of this busy driving weekend, are Democrats making a joke out of your paying at the pump? That's what Republicans are saying today as their opponents release a new radio ad impersonating President Bush. Take a listen.
ACTOR: (From audiotape.) (Answering machine beep.) Hayesey, W here. Wanted to thank you for your support of the big oil energy agenda. Appreciate you voting to give billions in tax breaks to the big oil companies. Sure, gasoline is over 4 bucks a gallon, and the oil companies are making record profits. But what's good for big oil is good for America, right? (Laughs.) I guess that's why they call us the Grand OIL Party. (Laughs.) Seriously, Robin, I know I can always count on you. Got to go. Bye now.
MS. GLICK: Well, let's get some reaction now from Republican Congressman Scott Garrett. The same ad is targeting him in his district.
Good afternoon, Congressman.
REP. GARRETT: Good to be with you.
MS. GLICK: All right. Initial reaction to this? I know they're targeting you among many other congressmen. Tell me about it.
REP. GARRETT: I think it's really sad to think that American consumers right now are really suffering, whether it's the mom trying to get her kids off to school or off to after-school activities, the dads or the moms trying to get to work, truckers paying over $1,000 to fill up their rigs with gasoline or diesel fuel. There is an energy problem right now, and what are the Democrats doing? Well, Nancy Pelosi, of course, took her own private jet out to California, a jumbo jet, and Congress is on recess. We haven't passed any legislation to resolve the problem. Instead, they're going with personal attacks, not solving the problem. That's wrong.
MS. GLICK: You and I both know the number-one criticism right now of the Republicans is that it's more of the same in terms of the energy talk right now. That it's looking only here in the United States, offshore drilling and, of course, not doing enough in terms of alternatives. How do you react to that?
REP. GARRETT: Well, that's wrong, and that's just more of the attacks from the other side. The Republican approach is a comprehensive approach. We have to do everything. We have to work on the conservation. We have to work on the alternative fuels. When we were in the majority, we actually pushed legislation on that, spent money on that. And the third portion of that, of course, is more American production here at home so that we're going to be less reliant on unstable regimes off shore and we can see the price of gasoline and energy go back down again. That means that we have to begin exploring here. That means we have to go deep-sea exploration, use new, 21st-century technology to explore and create it at home.
MS. GLICK: You know, there will be many who will say that Congress should never have gone on recess or gone on vacation this week of all times, particularly with the rhetoric coming out of the Middle East right now. What do you say to that?
REP. GARRETT: Well, that's what I agree with absolutely. We vote no when we voted to adjourn at the end of this past Thursday or Friday when we left Washington. Nancy Pelosi, she sets the agenda. She said, no, we're done, we're going home. She's going back to California, as I said. But we have an agenda. Republicans, we're trying to sign what we call a discharge petition saying that forces a vote on some of these important energy bills. Republicans are all in favor of it. The Democrats are basically all opposed to it, and they left town.
MS. GLICK: All right. So you're not going to do perhaps a comprehensive energy bill because you and I both know you're not going to get everything done on the list because there's too much disagreement. But tell us, please, that you're going to accomplish four of the 10 things on the list.
REP. GARRETT: I'd like us to start with the one thing. One of the bills we said is let's begin more energy exploration at home. Eighty-five percent of our offshore energy right now, natural gas and oil, it's all locked up. I would like to say that the states should have the right to decide among themselves whether we can explore here. Midwestern oil and coal, what have you, the United States has one of the largest collection or source of coal energy in the world. Can't we decide to go in environmentally clean ways to explore that, develop new alternative energy sources out of that? So those types of bills should move. The American public on this issue is on our side. Around 65 (percent), 72 percent of the American says more energy production must be had. Democrats aren't listening to the American public.
MS. GLICK: All right. Congressman, I'm looking forward to July 8th when Congress is back in session to get something done. Thanks so much for joining us.
REP. GARRETT: Thank you, appreciate the chance.