Matt Dempsey (202) 224-9797

David Lungren (202) 224-5642

President Obama Creates Subsidy Distraction, Avoids Central Issue: Increasing American Energy Production

Washington, D.C. - Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, today responded to President Obama's letter to Congress asking for oil and gas tax increases.

"With his letter to Congress today, President Obama apparently forgot that 61 senators last year voted against his proposal to raise taxes on America's oil and gas companies, and hence on consumers, and spend the money on green energy" Senator Inhofe said.  "He now wants Congress to do exactly the opposite.  His letter is merely a distraction from what every American knows can help restrain rising prices: increase supply, that is, increase American energy production. 

"Yet his Administration stands firmly against such a policy, calling instead to eliminate oil and gas production and raise gasoline prices to levels in Europe-in other words, $7 to $8 dollars a gallon.  The Obama EPA is pushing its cap-and-trade agenda, designed to raise the prices of the energy we use every day, including gasoline. 

"The Congressional Research Service (CRS) found that America leads the world in recoverable resources of oil, coal, and gas.  If the President wants to make a difference, he should use his bully pulpit by announcing to the world that the United States will aggressively explore and produce these resources.  Such action could help ease volatile oil markets, create tens of thousands of jobs, and lessen America's dependence on oil from the Middle East. 

"My bet is this won't happen, which is to the great detriment of American consumers and economic growth and recovery."