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Providing for Consideration of H.R.1613, Outer Continental Shelf Transboundary Hydrocarbon Agreements Authorization Act; Providing for Consideration of H.R. 2231, Offshore Energy and Jobs Act; Providing for Consideration of H.R. 2410, Agriculture, Rural Development , Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2014; Providing for Proceedings During the Period from June 20, 2013, Through July 5, 2013; and for Other Purposes

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I thank the gentleman for yielding time, and I rise in strong support of the rule and the underlying legislation covered by the rule.

Mr. Speaker, in our country today, millions of Americans continue to search for work, the national average price of gasoline is $3.50, and rising costs of everything from electricity to food to health care makes it tough for families and small businesses to make ends meet. But instead of providing relief for struggling Americans, President Obama yesterday announced a plan that will inflict further pain and cause further damage to our struggling economy.

The President's latest attempt to unilaterally impose a national energy tax will cost American jobs and will increase energy prices. Now, in stark contrast to that, Mr. Speaker, Republicans are advancing solutions to expand access to affordable energy in order to create jobs and to lower energy costs. The bills the House is considering this week are necessary because of the Obama administration's persistent and destructive attacks on American energy production. The President's latest efforts to impose new energy taxes and government red tape follow 4.5 years of erecting American energy roadblocks.

H.R. 2231, the Offshore Energy and Jobs Act, will unlock our offshore energy resources that are being held captive by this administration. The differences are clear between the President's current no-new-drilling-and-no-new-jobs plan and the Republican pro-energy, pro-jobs offshore drilling plan. The President's 5-year current offshore leasing plan keeps 85 percent of offshore areas under lock and key--Mr. Speaker, keeps 85 percent under lock and key--effectively reinstating the moratoria that were lifted right before he took office.

The Republican drill-smart plan would open new areas containing the most oil and natural gas resources, allowing for new energy production in parts of the Atlantic and the Pacific coasts. The President's plan refuses even to let Virginia develop its offshore resources until after 2017 and cancels a lease sale that would have allowed them to go offshore 2 years ago.

The Republican plan supports the bipartisan wishes of the Virginia Governor, the congressional delegation, and the public by requiring an offshore lease sale to be held.

The President's plan suppresses American job creation and economic growth. Our plan, Mr. Speaker, in contrast, would create 1.2 million jobs long term and would generate $1.5 billion in new revenue. This Republican approach is exactly what our country and our economy needs right now.

We can do better than what the President outlined yesterday that stifles American energy production and raises energy costs.

I urge adoption of the rule and the underlying legislation.


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