Click here to watch Ranking Member Barrasso’s remarks.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR), delivered remarks at a full committee hearing to examine the President’s budget request for the Department of Energy for Fiscal Year 2023.
The hearing featured testimony from the Honorable Jennifer Granholm, secretary of Energy.
For more information on witness testimony click here.
Senator Barrasso’s remarks:
“Thanks so much Mr. Chairman, and thank you for holding today’s hearing.
“Thank you, Madam Secretary for testifying today.
“There are few issues to me as important right now as energy and that’s the same with the American people.
“During your confirmation hearing last year, I said, ‘the incoming administration should not devastate our economy by implementing policies that undermine energy production.’
“I meant that as a warning.
“It turned out to be a prediction.
“The shale revolution made America the world’s leading oil and natural gas producer.
“It also lowered our country’s carbon emissions.
“Many saw that as a huge success.
“Instead of embracing America’s energy revolution, President Biden is fighting it.
“He has been leading an energy counter-revolution.
“He wants to return America to the days of going hat in hand to the OPEC cartel.
“American families are now bearing the consequences.
“And our adversaries are in the driver’s seat.
“Madam Secretary, in an interview on Bloomberg last year, you were asked what your plan was to increase oil production, you responded, ‘that is hilarious.’
“You may find high energy prices a laughing matter, and maybe the president does as well.
“He seemed to laugh about it Saturday night at the White House Correspondents’ dinner.
“I can assure you American families are struggling, are suffering – they do not view these high gas prices as a laughing matter.
“The price of gas at the pump is up 70 percent since the week Joe Biden was inaugurated.
“Two-thirds of that increase came before Russia invaded Ukraine.
“Residential natural gas prices are up 24 percent from January 2021 to January 2022.
“Inflation is at a 40 year high.
“Too many families this past winter faced the choice of whether to heat their homes or put food on the table.
“The White House should be encouraging American energy production.
“The business section today of the New York Times front page, big picture: increasing costs next: electricity.
“Instead of focusing on that, the administration is waging war on America’s energy producers.
“The administration has done all it can to block new oil and gas production on federal lands, including banning new oil and gas lease sales.
“A court ruling lifted that moratorium.
“The president’s response was to slash the acreage available by 80 percent and make it even more expensive to produce American energy on that land.
“The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission even tried to impose rules that would make it nearly impossible to site new natural gas pipelines.
“And last month, the White House repealed rules to ensure environmental reviews are completed in a timely manner.
“U.S. oil production is 1.3 million barrels a day below the pre-pandemic peak.
“We are even farther below the increase in production projected a couple of years ago.
“In addition to helping American people, this lost production would have undermined Russia.
“Killing the Keystone pipeline on day one, banning new federal leases, undermining Alaskan oil production, and blocking energy infrastructure has empowered our adversaries.
“While the President reluctantly ended domestic purchases of Russian oil –remember he begged Russia to produce more oil when he was in Glasgow, Scotland for the climate meeting – the president still hasn’t stopped the purchase of Russian uranium.
“America has enough uranium to replace these imports, but the administration is doing nothing to boost production here at home.
“Desperate gimmicks like releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve or a gasoline tax holiday will not solve our supply shortage.
“The solution is more American energy, but that something the administration will not allow.
“We must make our country energy dominant again.
“Increasing U.S. oil and natural gas production would make our people more prosperous.
“It would make our nation and our allies safer.
“The president has claimed that he isn’t doing anything to limit domestic energy production.
“It’s simply not true.
“Look at President Biden’s policies.
“Look at production numbers.
“Look at the international marketplace.
“Look at the statements of his own appointees.
“According to Gina McCarthy, the White House national climate advisor, ‘President Biden remains absolutely committed to not moving forward with additional drilling on public lands.’
“Madam Secretary, it’s long past time for the Biden administration to have an energy strategy that includes American energy.
“Thank you, Mr. Chairman.”