Republican News

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Alaska Senator Frank H. Murkowski, Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, issued the following comments today during a hearing on vehicle technologies and alternative fuels: “Many believe all we need to do is tighten CAFE standards to end this energy crisis. But the reality is, American ingenuity has already put very efficient cars on the market today. But instead of choosing fuel economy first, the American people – by their own free will -- often chose vehicles with improved performance, increased capacities, and the features that everyday life demands. “Neither this Congress nor any radical environmentalist should deprive them of this choice. Automakers can make all of the fuel-efficient vehicles they can, but if no one buys them, what good have you done? The ten most fuel-efficient vehicles sold today make up less than 1.5% of total vehicle sales. “The auto companies should work to produce new vehicles running on advanced alternative fuels or new technologies like fuel cells. We should focus our energies on vehicles that provide all of the performance characteristics families demand in a form they can recognize. Congress should provide families with tax incentives to help them choose these new technologies over old. “Reducing our need for gasoline will reduce our dangerous dependence on foreign oil. The longer we are dependent on OPEC and Saddam Hussein, the greater the risk we run. Energy security means national security for our country, personal security at home, and economic security for our future. Tomorrow’s transportation technology is an important part of ensuring that security.” ###