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Motion to Instruct Conferees on H.R. 4348, Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012, Part II

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. BARTON of Texas. I thank the gentleman for yielding.

I wasn't planning on speaking on this bill. But I was listening in my office to the debate between the proponents and opponents of the bill and felt moved to come over and try to answer some of the questions that the opponents have asked of the bill.

EPA is supposed to be a fair referee. They're supposed to say: If it's a strike, it's a strike; if it's a ball, it's a ball; if he's out, he's out; if he's safe, he's safe. But the Obama EPA is not a fair referee. It's not a fair umpire. The Obama EPA has a preconceived--what I consider to be a radical environmental agenda, and they appear heck-bent to impose it on the American people, whether there is a scientific rationale or not.

As Mr. Olson of Texas just pointed out, the President, as a candidate, said that he basically wanted to try to make it impossible to build any more coal-fired power plants in America. When he became President, he appointed a regional administrator down in Texas, Dr. Armendariz, who said that he wanted to try to put hydraulic fracturing out of business and brought a case against Range Resources in Texas that was thrown out on its face because of the lack of evidence that there was any environmental damage caused by hydraulic fracturing, in this specific case in Parker County.

You had the civil servant at the EPA early in the Obama administration, when they were considering their endangerment finding, which they had to impose in order to say they could regulate greenhouse gases, they had a career civil servant who sent a detailed, I think 50- or 60-page analysis of the proposed endangerment finding and basically said it was hogwash. And he got back emails from within the White House and the higher rankings at political subdivisions of the EPA that said, Don't tell us the facts. We've already made up our minds.

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Mr. BARTON of Texas. This same Dr. Armendariz made a comment not too many years ago that he wanted to crucify industry. He has since resigned because of those comments.

Those of us who support the McKinley motion to instruct do so because we don't think the current EPA is fair. Sometimes we have to tell the EPA what to do because they seem to be incapable of applying basic scientific methods, scientific principles. They want to impose a radical environmental agenda, apparently. And some of us don't think that's right, and we don't think it's good for the American people and the American economy.

So I strongly support what my good friend from West Virginia is doing because it at least makes it possible for a source that, for years and years and decades, has been used without any problem at all to continue to be used. And I think that's a good thing. So I rise in support. I thank the gentleman for the time, and I hope the House will adopt his motion to instruct conferees.

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