August 12th, 2008, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson today praised the American people, the House Republicans and the nation’s opinion writers, for forcing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to accept a vote on off-shore drilling.
“The Speaker of the House is surrendering to the demands of an angry public, who will no longer tolerate sky-high energy prices. And much of the credit for this turnabout belongs to House lawmakers and the nation’s opinion writers who kept the pressure on the obstructionist House Speaker. This is a tremendous breakthrough, but it does not go far enough,” said Wilson.
“Now, ‘Madame No’ must allow an up-or-down vote on the American Energy Act, which is the most comprehensive solution to the energy crisis,” Wilson said. “The issue is not just about drilling—though that is critical—but it is also about lifting restrictions on building nuclear power plants, gasoline refineries, coal-to-liquid, oil shale exploration, and deregulating the energy sector so that markets may move to meet the ever-increasing demand for energy.”
Pelosi had previously challenged Republicans to “imagine” a way that they might get a vote. But after appearing on CNN with Larry King, a clearly cowed House Speaker openly reversed course, “They have this thing that says drill offshore in the protected areas. We can do that. We can have a vote on that.”
Wilson warned that her latest tactic would come with strings attached, “Americans need to be reminded that the off-shore drilling moratorium expires October 1st. Just like the Gang of 10 legislation in the Senate, I suspect that Speaker Pelosi is attempting to push legislation that would only allow for partial access to the outer-continental shelf. Americans may just be better off just letting the current moratorium expire. But the real objective is to secure an up-or-down vote on the American Energy Act.”
Republican leaders have called upon their Democratic colleagues to join with them in supporting the American Energy Act.
Since the August recess began, Republicans have stayed on the House floor, demanding an up-or-down vote on their proposals. After initially opposing the congressional recess, they remained on the House floor, urging President Bush to call for a special session of Congress to address the ongoing energy crisis.
“The American people will not support a government that scuttles the nation’s resources—our national treasure—at the moment of crisis,” warned Wilson. “Democrats in Congress need to listen carefully to their Republican colleagues’ proposals, because they will open up the markets for more energy. And the greater the energy supply in relation to demand, the more reduced the price will be. That’s what Americans want,” said Wilson.