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Federal Government's Response to the Oil Spill

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. CARTER. I thank my friend from Texas for yielding. And let me say, that was a real eye-opener. I knew from having read some of the things previously that BP certainly was claiming big green activities both in their ads on television and in other places, and I do remember reading, I believe in the National Journal, some articles about their activities on behalf of climate change. But it didn't really sink in until this very minute when you read this to me. And I am going to bring something up that's a little tongue-in-cheek humor. But I have a question I wanted to ask because now you have talked about the difference between what we talked about, which was global warming and climate change.

When I went to school in Lubbock, Texas, back in the sixties, I remember specifically a day when a bunch of buddies and I went out to play a round of golf. It was 89 or 90 degrees. We were in a pair of golf shirts and Bermuda shorts, and we started out playing a round of golf. Before we got through with nine holes, a dust storm came up, and we could hardly see the ball, and we could hardly hit it. Then it began to rain, and it rained mud for about an hour through the dust storm. Then as the dust seemed to calm and go away, the temperature began to drop, and by the time we got to the club house, the temperature was 20 degrees.

So we had had a climate change from 90 to 20 in a 10-hour period, including a dust storm and rain. And we know that climate change is George W. Bush's fault. Now did he do that? Because that certainly was the most spectacular climate change I have ever seen in my entire life. But, unfortunately, we all know in Texas, we have those climate changes all year long. Is that the Republicans' fault and the Bush administration's fault? Good Lord, where were they in 1964? I think he was probably in junior high school or something. I don't know. What do you think, Mr. Gohmert?


Mr. CARTER. If the gentleman will yield for a moment, I would argue that we enhance our cynicism quite a bit by the article that you just read concerning the relationship between the Obama administration, the Democratic Party, and British Petroleum prior to the leak, the massive disaster in the gulf. So you have to be a cynic when you see the kind of ``whose blank am I going to kick'' attitude out there. And of course everybody knew who we were talking about's blank that was going to get kicked, and that was going to be British Petroleum, as if they were the evil empire, you know, the black knights or whatever you want to call them. When you realize that they were partners on the same piece of legislation that he talked about for at least one-third to almost one-half of the speech that the President made last night to the American people because the solution to the oil flowing into the gulf is not bringing in the Dutch ships and other ships that have volunteered to come help by awaiting the Jones Act. It's not even releasing American flagships to go out there, which is no violation of the Jones Act.

No. The solution to the oil spill is cap-and-trade, cap-and-tax. Let's see if we can't come up with a whole new tax scheme for the American people. Let's see if we can't drive up the cost of the energy for their homes and for their businesses. Let's see if we can't put the American farmer out of business. Because you talk to a farmer about cap-and-tax, and he will tell you, his food and fertilizer--or the food and fiber he produces and the energy it takes to run his farm equipment is all going to be destroyed by this scheme to make money another way with cap-and-tax programs.

Well, I mean, look at how much money the former Vice President of the United States, Al Gore, has made in participating in cap-and-tax issues in foreign areas, like the European Union. So get back to the oil spill, Mr. President. I yield back.


Mr. CARTER. I want to congratulate my colleague for doing some mighty interesting research. It is good that we laid this kind of research out before this House and before the American public.

One of the things that people get concerned about up here is who is shooting straight. As far as Ms. Baca is concerned, it looks right now like this administration decided to put their money on the wrong horse. When we start talking about Minerals Management, that is starting to ring a bell with the American people because our interesting father and son inspection team that you have talked about on the floor of the House, isn't that part of Minerals Management?


Mr. CARTER. That comment about the no vehicles also prevents those who are in charge of enforcing our border from following the drug dealers as they take their caravans of bad product across the border and into our wilderness area, and that is a serious situation.


Mr. CARTER. John Mica from Florida was with us earlier tonight, and he gave us an interesting revelation. There is an American flagship firm with cleanup capabilities that has informed our government they stand ready and willing, if they are asked, to start helping clean up.

The Jones Act has nothing to do with this. These are American-flagged ships, and they are still waiting for a response from the White House, and you don't have to waive any Jones Act. All you've got to do is say, come on, boys, get in there and start cleaning up. My Lord, if they know how and they've got the equipment, why don't we have anybody on the face of this globe that's willing to do it out there in the Gulf cleaning that water up?

So it really is almost comical. With all the criticism of the Bush administration over Katrina and Rita and some of the hurricanes, natural disasters that occurred, this man-made disaster has had this administration's hands hog-tied for 2 months, and it's a hog tying of their own doing.


Mr. CARTER. And the first thing I should say is, Amen to everything you've had to say, and I want to thank you for saying it.

You know, it's become a strange world when our closest ally in the Middle East, Israel, sends its Prime Minister over here and he's taken in through the back door, the service entrance, to the White House. He's told no photo ops, and he is basically slighted by the person we have elected to be the leader of the free world.

And then fast forward to just a couple of weeks ago, when the leader of the Palestinian movement comes in here, and we see photo ops, living room meetings, and a big chunk of money headed to the Palestinians promised by the President of the United States.

It's embarrassing how much of a change of policy we have towards our only--or at least our longest surviving ally in the Middle East. I was in New York the day before yesterday, and one of the people I met with said, Have you ever thought about the fact that if Israel didn't exist, how many Americans would have to be stationed somewhere in the Middle East to try to keep that cauldron from exploding all over the entire world? Remember what the Prime Minister of England told us right here before this House, the reason you have to respond is because it's your turn, you're the only real superpower left in the world.

That responsibility we're taking and we know about it, but when we have those who have stood by our side and worked with us to try to make things go--like Israel, like great Britain--why would a change of administration be so insulting to an ally like Israel? I was struck dumb by the whole thing; I think you were too. And I think you've done an excellent job of describing the possible consequences of the position we seem to be taking in this administration against Israel. I think all Americans of whatever heritage should be seriously concerned about what's going on.

I thank you for allowing me to participate in this evening, and I yield back my time to you, Mr. Gohmert.


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