Skip to comments.Reid plan splits Dems
Posted on 07/28/2008 6:21:35 PM PDT by mdittmar
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has split the Democratic front opposed to drilling with a plan that would open new areas for exploration.
Reids proposal was meant to insulate Senate Democratic candidates from public anger over gas prices. Instead, it has created a divide with liberal colleagues and drawn fire from senior House Democrats.
The legislation, drafted by Reid and Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), would open nearly a billion new acres off the coast of Alaska to study for drilling. It would also dramatically accelerate oil leases in the western and central Gulf of Mexico.
I am unalterably opposed to drilling, said Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, who cited a massive oil spill that closed nearly 100 miles of the Mississippi River last week.
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) urged Reid to be very careful about drilling off the coast of Alaska.
Reid could also face resistance from other Democrats who oppose drilling off Alaskas shores.
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), for example, has sponsored legislation to ban drilling in the North Aleutian Basin, an area that Republicans have already opened to oil leasing.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told The Hill that lawmakers should focus on the National Petroleum Reserve on Alaskas North Slope instead of offshore.
There are tens of millions of barrels in the reserve. If you want oil in Alaska, drill there, she said.
Some Democrats are irked that Senate leaders havent shown stronger resolve in the face of Republican attacks that attempt to blame opponents of offshore drilling for higher gas prices.
Some people are just scared of the accusation that not leasing more acres has an impact on oil prices, said Rep. Peter DeFazio, a senior Democrat from Oregon. It just doesnt.
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, echoed Pelosi.
I dont object to oil companies doing more drilling where they already have leases, said Waxman.
I dont think any of the proposals to open more areas for oil drilling off the coast of our country makes a lot of sense, because it will be years before we see any oil from these places, he said.
Democratic lawmakers say the Reid-Bingaman proposal seems to be gaining momentum, though these same sources questioned whether Pelosi would schedule it for a vote in the House.
The provision has attracted support from powerful liberals such as Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Environment and Public Works panel.
Votes against expanded drilling would open Democrats to accusations that they had blocked efforts to lower record gas prices. Votes for Republican amendments to encourage more drilling, however, would anger environmental activists.
Before reaching the House, the proposal must pass the Senate, where it is caught in a procedural dispute.
Reid has suggested voting on his legislation and a Republican alternative in the form of amendments to a pending oil speculation bill.
Reids office did not respond to requests seeking comment.
Republicans are demanding votes on several amendments and have pledged to block Democrats from moving to other issues until drilling receives floor votes.
Environmental activists have panned Reids suggestion that more of Alaskas waters should be studied for oil drilling.
We truly believe drilling off the icy shores of Alaska is a bad idea, said Melinda Pierce, a lobbyist for the Sierra Club, who said that sea ice increases the chances of an accident in the Arctic. Weve been long and vocal opponents of offshore development in the Arctic Ocean.
Eleanor Huffines, Alaska director for The Wilderness Society, urged Senate Democrats to forget about offshore drilling and concentrate instead on tax credits for renewable energy development and other ideas.
We think looking for additional oil and gas leasing will do nothing to lower the price of gas, said Huffines.
Bill Wicker, spokesman for the Energy and Natural Resources panel, said Bingaman supports tax credits for renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power.
But he said the Reid-Bingaman proposal could significantly increase domestic oil production.
Specifically, the proposal would set up planning areas covering nearly 1 billion acres off the Alaskan coast with access to an estimated 1.2 billion barrels of oil.
The bill would also accelerate leasing by requiring the government to offer lease sales more frequently. It would also eliminate some royalty relief for Outer Continental Shelf leases in the Gulf of Mexico.
Wicker acknowledged environmentalists criticism that opening more territory would have little immediate impact on gas prices.
We never presented this as going to have an immediate impact on lowering the price of gasoline, he said.
Good split - Dumb and Dumber.
I am unalterably opposed to drilling, said Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, who cited a massive oil spill that closed nearly 100 miles of the Mississippi River last week. “
I wish this damned fossil would go and have his head candled.
These people have been brainwashed by their own Liberal propaganda.
We think looking for additional oil and gas leasing will do nothing to lower the price of gas, said Huffines. “
Another certifiable “green” nutcase.
Yeah baby keep the dissent stirring. Meanwhile I sure as hell hope that GOP challengers nationwide are pounding away on this issue.
This morning a McCain spokesman was briefly on “Fox and Friends”. The first thing she said was that McCain approved new offshore drilling IF the states agreed. I’d wondered if he’s changed that since the initial announcement June 17, and he has not.
McCain can fool around and lose this issue. I’d thought a time or two that some Dems. might become so worried that they’d begin agreeing to drilling in new areas. If a number of Dems. propose more definite new drilling than McCain’s leaving it to the states, then he might fumble away about the best issue Republicans have as of now.
Then why did you go to college, you dumbass? It would be YEARS before you'd see any benefit. Why do we research cures for diseases? Why do we try to develop alternate energy? It's all YEARS from now. Wexler is a raving lunatic.
Well then, you're just stupid.
That would force Pelosi to vote against the Democrats own speculation bill. There's going to be little change in the congress so the next President will be a lame duck from day one.
Wrong script, Melinda. The Goracle told us there is no ice in the Arctic.
it’s always fascinated me that these enviro’s
constantly travel and thus use gasoline and jet fuel.
do they ever wonder where that stuff comes from?
We ought to call these nuts the “Red Herring Patrol”.
Talk about bogus talking points.
She’s a rank member of the Axis of Fembiciles, all right.
This issue will hurt the whackos pretty bad I believe. They don’t understand that many cannot afford oil and can’t wait years for cheaper energy. Oil is the one area we have mastered and for the Dems to stop exploration is political suicide IMHO.
Here’s an idea....how about ALL the envirowhackjobs stop using energy based on oil. Don’t drive, don’t use A/C or heat, don’t mow lawns etc....that will increase the supply for the rest of us and then we won’t need to drill for more oil. BRILLIANT!!!!!!!
Looks like Reid tried a “cover my arse” move, but Bella Pelosi wants to hang it out to dry.....
Is she actually comparing 700 million to 90 billion? RATS are nuts and she deserves to be their leader.
Oh, and we aren't going to need any future oil ?????????????????
Vote for me today, and I'll screw you tomorrow !!!!!!!!!!!
(Rest of comment pre-deleted for Mod consideration).
If you like $5/gal, Thank Congress in Nov. If you want $10, Vote No Oilbama.
Pray for W and Our Troops
The same mantra they been saying for years. It really does get old.
we find a conservative billionaire to pay enviro’s to monitor and attack those enviro’s who use too much gasoline and jet fuel.
This is a gift from the gods.
This should be sent to every American, ASAP.
These a$$hats are willing to do stem cell research "for the future".
As a former resident of the Garden State, I too wish this fossil a long overdue retirement.
That he, a Senator from the worst Superfund Site State in the nation, would be worried about a small oil spill in the Mississippi is downright laughable.
What I can’t understand is how a successful businessman like him(he started Automatic Data Processing) could turn into such a left wing raving mad Communist.
And at age 84, he is running for re-election to the Senate.
And the brain dead morons in NJ will reelect this cadaverous clown while they wait on gas lines in a few months, bitching about the high price of gas.
Hence, my tagline, which was born of many frustrating years in the People’s Republic of NJ.
Florida resident, my ass.
A retirement communnity home owned by his in-laws. Crook through and through.
Proving again that he is far past senility. The spill in the Mississippi River was from a LEAKING BARGE, not an oil drilling platform.
...Reid's proposal was meant to insulate Senate Democratic candidates from public anger over gas prices. Instead, it has created a divide with liberal colleagues and drawn fire from senior House Democrats...The usual buffoonery from the Party of Treason. Pelosi's got to be the biggest a-hole ever to hold that position -- "tens of millions of barrels" in the Strategic Reserve would be burned or otherwise used in short order, and she must know that.
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), for example, has sponsored legislation to ban drilling in the North Aleutian Basin, an area that Republicans have already opened to oil leasing. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told The Hill that lawmakers should focus on the National Petroleum Reserve on Alaska's North Slope instead of offshore...
Democratic lawmakers say the Reid-Bingaman proposal seems to be gaining momentum, though these same sources questioned whether Pelosi would schedule it for a vote in the House. The provision has attracted support from powerful liberals such as Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Environment and Public Works panel. Pelosi has balked at scheduling any drilling legislation for a regular floor vote because that would give Republicans an opportunity to force vulnerable Democratic incumbents to vote on difficult amendments...
Bill Wicker, spokesman for the Energy and Natural Resources panel, said Bingaman supports tax credits for renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power. But he said the Reid-Bingaman proposal could significantly increase domestic oil production. Specifically, the proposal would set up planning areas covering nearly 1 billion acres off the Alaskan coast with access to an estimated 1.2 billion barrels of oil. The bill would also accelerate leasing by requiring the government to offer lease sales more frequently. It would also eliminate some royalty relief for Outer Continental Shelf leases in the Gulf of Mexico.
The scary thing is,they are the leaders of the Senate and the House.
This dimwit would lose his head if it wasn't attached. I'm hating myself more and more each day because I have to vote for him. What a nitwit.
Nevada’s feelin’ it and Reid is probably getting an earful.
The Canadians have done it example, Hibernia - tho’ not arctic it’s huge and in “iceberg alley”.
Vegas is a ghost town and gas prices are to blame. I am sure the casino owners said drill or we will have a new Senator.
Good ole’ Harry, as dependable as Big Ben. He bitches, he moans, he promises to fight on forever, and in the end, he always caves. I suppose he could just start out trying to reach a reasonable compromise, but that’d deprive us of the drama. The real question is why any sentient creature would believe anything he says when he starts posturing.
This is my first reply here, been lurking for years, and the global warming farce has forced me to finally sign up. That they put these liberal fascists priorities ahead of tax paying everyday citizens is proof alone these clowns need to be thrown out.
1) Why don't the oil companies drill in the 48,000 acres?
2) Just where do they propose to drill and what, specifically are the known, likely and speculated reserves in each. Not just raw guesses.
3) Just HOW SOON would oil flow in these places?
I am certainly not saying that “Big Oil” is playing games but I would like these questions answered.
When we pump our own oil, Oil Cos. are NOT paying $146/bbl are they? Aren't they paying the cost as pumped? Wouldn't that, by definition, drop the pump price of gas?
Did Lautenberg see fit to tell anyone that the oil spill had nothing to do with drilling? Or did he think it wasn’t important to confuse the “little people” with facts?
In the mail yesterday, I got a magazine with a lot of photos of Wexler meeting with various PACs. The groupings changed, the people changed, but there was one dominant theme to all the pictures: EARS.
Woops! Wrong Demo.... I meant Waxman.
Yeah, the price of a road trip to Vegas has doubled since 2004.
Maria Cantwell, that b1tch from Washington, she’s the one that confirmed my suspicions about this whole anti-energy/global warming ecofreak mess being behind it. She came out the other day in a press conference and said the goal was to get people using less oil. They don’t want drilling because people would use more oil. They don’t want us using our own resources. Anything that allows people to use more energy they are against.
Which is another reason why (not the only one) they were against dropping the gas tax.
Which is why they are against any new drilling.
Which is why they don’t want any oil or coal or natural gas prices going down.
Which is why they don’t want more coal plants even though most use lots of scrubbers and low SOx coal.
They don’t want ANY INCREASES IN SUPPLY!!!!! Increases in supply drive prices down, more is used. Even if prices don’t go down (which they will) there is more supply to be used at some point.
They are trying to fight against the market. They are trying to keep supply low and demand high, then tax the sh1t out of it and not allow any increases in supply - and they in fact want supply to go down even more.
They are trying to implement Kyoto without having to sign it.
They are friggin evil, to do this to their own countrymen. Elitist top party communist officials. Saying “F#ck You! to all of us in the proletariat” (in their commie-loving worldviews).
The Party of Unity, yessiree.
I thought it was his nose - don’t they call him nostrilitis?
how do you know when a democrat is lying?
you can tell when his lips move.