U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, made the following statement regarding President Obama's pledge to "ensure the free flow" oil from the Middle East and North Africa during today's speech before the United Nations.

"Hold on, more oil from the Middle East - did I hear that correctly?" Vitter asked. "There is an abundance of domestic and North American energy that is still off limits because of this Administration, and we need to ensure a free flow of that - not Middle Eastern oil. We need to prioritize domestic energy production, instead of the Administration's expensive regulations and a mess of bureaucratic red tape that only slow down and obstruct the long-term success of American-grown energy businesses."

Earlier today, President Obama addressed the United Nations: "We will ensure the free flow of energy from the region to the world. Although America is steadily reducing our own dependence on imported oil, the world still depends on the region's energy supply, and a severe disruption could destabilize the entire global economy."