WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Pete Domenici, ranking member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, today made the following statement regarding President Bush’s proposals for increased domestic production of oil.
“Today, President Bush identified America’s most pressing energy problem--increased reliance on foreign oil due at least in part to a lack of supply at home. The President called on Congress to increase American production by lifting the ban on deep sea exploration, lifting the moratorium on oil shale development, permitting exploration in Alaska, and enhancing our refining capacity.
“The American Energy Production Act (S.2958), which I introduced on May 1st, accomplishes each of these goals. This legislation would provide America with up to 24 billion barrels of oil and send a strong message to oil markets and producers that we will no longer stand for being so reliant on foreign oil.
“High prices at the pump are affecting every single American’s pocket book and way of life. Maximizing our energy production here at home will help us meet demand, lower prices, and even provide a much needed boost to our economy.
“Thus far, the other side has shown no willingness to work with us to increase production. However, over the next several weeks, I will continue to push forward with all or some of these ideas because the American people are demanding action. For instance, a new poll released just yesterday found that 67 percent of Americans support deep sea exploration offshore.
“The bottom line is that Congress must bypass the political bickering, come together and stop the excuses. Even if we can’t agree on every proposal, I sincerely hope that the Majority will join us to find ways that we can increase American production.”