Democrat-Controlled Senate and White House Block Solutions to Create Jobs and Help America Become More Energy Independent
WASHINGTON, DC – Throughout the 112th Congress, House Republicans have fought for pro-growth policies to create jobs emphasizing an “all of the above” energy policy. Sound energy policy is critical to economic growth. In addition to the immense job creation potential directly in the energy sector, the affordable and reliable energy supplies are necessary ingredients for growth across the American economy. Unfortunately, the House’s efforts have been met by either resistance or inaction by the Democrat-controlled Senate and the Obama administration. To date, 39 jobs bills, many affecting the energy sector, are held up in the Senate when millions of Americans are out of work or underemployed.
Nothing could be a greater illustration of the president’s failed energy policies than the Keystone XL Pipeline. Using every inch of red tape at his disposal, the president has repeatedly delayed a final decision on the pipeline. When Congress finally pressed him to make a decision, the president blocked this landmark jobs and energy project, which is estimated to support 20,000 direct jobs and over 100,000 indirect jobs. The Keystone XL Pipeline will carry nearly a million additional barrels per day of secure North American oil supplies to U.S. refineries. House Republicans have sought every available opportunity to advance the project, voting a total of six times to allow for construction of the pipeline. By contrast, despite pledging in January to do “whatever it takes” to move the economy forward, President Obama personally lobbied the Senate to kill an amendment calling for congressional approval of the pipeline. By blocking construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline, the Obama administration is standing in the way of shovel ready jobs and greater energy security.
Another component of House Republicans’ pro-jobs, pro-energy agenda includes the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act, which is sponsored by Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO). This legislative package, which passed the House with bipartisan support this summer, includes key measures advanced by the Energy and Commerce Committee to increase American energy supplies and cut through regulatory burdens that could drive up gasoline prices. The bill also includes several legislative proposals from the Natural Resources Committee designed to help create jobs by removing barriers to domestic energy production. While middle class families continue to struggle, 2012 has been one for the record books when it comes to high gas prices. Prices have risen sharply since President Obama took office – from $1.84 per gallon to $3.575 per gallon today. The Domestic Energy and Jobs Act offers a solution to help ease the pain at the pump, embracing our nation’s resources to increase access to affordable energy supplies while creating good-paying jobs. A companion bill was introduced by Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND) but the Democratic leadership in the Senate has failed to bring the legislation up for a vote.
With coal jobs disappearing by the day, the House stood up and took action by voting on the Stop the War on Coal Act. The legislation was comprised of a series of bills that aim to stop EPA’s regulatory assault on America’s power sector. The package included three proposals advanced by the Energy and Commerce Committee – the Energy Tax Prevention Act, the Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation (TRAIN) Act, and the Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act – that help protect jobs and affordable energy from the Obama administration’s destructive overreach. With millions of Americans out of work and coal mining operations now shuttering across the country, the administration’s war on coal is taking its toll. More and more workers are being laid off and families are facing the threat of higher electricity costs at a time when they can least afford it. Sadly, the Stop the War on Coal Act joins the other pro-jobs bills stuck in the Senate.
House Republicans have an energy strategy and legislative record that embraces all of our resources and is truly emblematic of an “all-of-the-above” approach – one that will help achieve North American energy independence and create jobs. Read more and see why it’s important for the Senate to finally act on pro-jobs, pro-energy solutions by visiting the American Energy Initiative Facebook page here.