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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Let's See, Oil Prices Are High. What To Do? What To Do? Wait A Second, I Know! Drill Dammit! Drill!

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While John McCain is blowing his chance to capitalize on possibly the biggest issue of the upcoming election - high oil prices - at least Republicans in the House (of all places!) are doing the right and smart thing. Michelle Malkin cites USA Today that:

Supporters of a proposal to allow drilling for oil and gas off the U.S. coastline are expected to make their case to a House panel Wednesday.

Offshore oil and gas production has been banned off most of the U.S. coastline since Congress approved the Outer Continental Shelf moratorium in 1981, which prevented the leasing of coastal waters for fossil fuel development.

Rep. John Peterson, R-Pa., wants to change that with an amendment to the Interior Department spending bill to be considered by a House Appropriations subcommittee. The amendment would lift the prohibition on exploration 50 to 200 miles offshore but continue to ban drilling within 50 miles of the coastline.

“For 27 years, Congress has deliberately locked-up vast offshore oil and natural gas reserves,” Peterson said. “With the price at the pump increasing daily — with no end in sight — and the cost of natural gas trading at record levels, Congress needs to unlock these reserves.”

He cites estimates from the Minerals Management Service that there are 86 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic feet of natural gas located offshore.

The bill later went down to defeat along party lines, Republicans all in favor of drilling, Dems against. This is the kind of common sense issue that would easily resonate with voters. Sadly standard bearer McCain is squishy on offshore drilling and no better than the head of the Sierra Club when it comes to drilling in ANWR, apparently mistaking that tundra-covered hellhole in Alaska for the majesty of the Grand Canyon.

Although it escapes the two major party candidates for President the American people are sharp enough to understand that if we are being jerked around over the issue of foreign oil it makes a helluva lot of sense to drill for our own instead.

Malkin goes on to cite the WSJ that:

A century and a half after oil production began, there is ample evidence that a lot of oil — and natural gas — remains to be found in the U.S. and its territorial waters. Some of those areas are wide open to oil companies, including most of the Gulf of Mexico where deep-water floating rigs now routinely drill wells hundreds of miles from shore. Even in the gulf, areas are off limits, including most of the waters off the Florida coast. The entire East and West Coasts are off limits for new drilling.

The US has a huge amount of oil that remains currently untapped. The Bakken Formation in Montana and North Dakota alone is hugely rich in oil.
In April 2008, a report issued by the state of North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources estimated that the North Dakota portion of the Bakken contained 167 billion barrels of oil[9].

Due to their thisclose relationship with the radical environmental movement the Dems are in no position to exploit this opening. A May Gallup poll shows that 57% of Americans favor drilling in coastal and wilderness areas. If the Republicans in Congress can get their thick-headed Presidential candidate on board they'd be able to speak very appealingly with one voice to the American people on an issue that has mass appeal and is good policy, too.

A Newt One discusses

Bear Creek Ledger does as well

So too The Cassandra Page

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