E&C Republicans Lead Bipartisan Bill to Stop Biden Admin from Sending SPR to China

Sequence 01.00_04_58_00.Still001.jpg

Washington, D.C. — Energy and Commerce Committee Republicans spoke on the House Floor yesterday in support of H.R. 22, the Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan support 331-97. Led by Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), the members condemned the Biden administration’s reckless depletion of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR)—which helped China build the world’s largest government-controlled stockpile—and demanded the administration work to unleash American energy.

Chair Rodgers released the following statement following passage of H.R. 22:

“To cover up his failed policies driving our energy and inflation crisis, President Biden is draining our nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserves at an alarming rate. America’s SPR – once the world’s largest stockpile – has been depleted to the lowest levels since 1983. To date, President Biden has released more from the SPR than all U.S. presidents in history combined. Millions of barrels of that oil have gone to China, which now has the world’s largest government-controlled stockpile of oil. Draining our strategic reserves for political purposes and selling it to China is a significant threat to our national and energy security. This must be stopped, which is why I’m proud to join my Republican colleagues in passing H.R. 22, one of the most bipartisan votes on an energy bill in many years and multiple Congresses. There’s more to come. This is just the beginning.”

Below are highlights from E&C Members who spoke on the House floor in favor of H.R. 22:

Rep. Michael Burgess, M.D. (R-TX): “The Republican majority is wasting no time in making good on our Commitment to the American People to reverse this reckless agenda that the Biden administration has followed. Republicans understand that energy policy is foundational to a thriving and dynamic national economy.”

Rep. Bob Latta (R-OH): “For the first two years of the Biden administration, we have seen an unprecedented level of hostility toward America’s energy producers. The administration has made every effort to undermine, avoid, and restrict oil and gas production in North America while at the same time moving to drain our strategic reserves in an attempt to offset the price increases caused by the President’s own policies.”

Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY): “The problem we’re facing today is because of President Biden and the Democrats in Congress’ war on American oil. That’s the problem we’re here to address. The price of gasoline hit over $5 a gallon in the height of this war on oil. $4.80 a gallon in Kentucky when it was just over $2.20 when President Biden took office. American families are hurting because of this. Small business owners are hurting because of this, and they continue to struggle.”

Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL): “Drawing down these reserves to cover up failed policies is wrong. But doing it and then selling that oil to China, our chief adversary, is un-American.”

Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH): “This administration, who has put a stranglehold on domestic production by canceling pipelines, reducing drilling, halting leases, and proposing burdensome regulations, they’re now telling the American taxpayers, ‘sorry, we depleted your national reserves, sold some of it to China, and now we won’t refill it because it’s too expensive.’ Aren’t they the ones making oil more expensive? It’s as if President Biden thinks the SPR is his ‘Strategic Political Reserve’ to be used as a band aid for his failed energy policies.”

Rep. Larry Bucshon, M.D. (R-IN): “In an attempt to lower energy prices, the administration has sold millions of barrels of petroleum from our strategic reserve, depleting our own supply, and helping China to build the world’s largest crude oil reserve. This must stop.”

Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA): “President Biden has sold our valuable Strategic Petroleum Reserve to China while Americans face the highest energy prices in a generation and a federal government that has failed to adequately address it by unleashing our own energy potential. And every barrel sold to China makes that decision even more damaging.”

Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC): “For political purposes President Biden sold off a strategic asset of this nation. He started dumping oil out of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, put it out there so that China could buy it, and China did buy it.”

Rep. John Curtis (R-UT): “Instead of utilizing the vast American resources we cleanly produce, including in Utah, the President chose to use this country’s strategic reserve to try to lower prices. On the other hand, in fact, the President did this while attacking energy jobs in Utah by suspending energy development on federal lands and raising the royalty to produce oil.”

Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-AZ): “While this administration has continued to shift blame for the rising prices, President Biden is draining our Strategic Petroleum Reserve, meant for emergencies, by selling off some of these reserves in a band aid solution for his policy failures.”

Rep. John Joyce, M.D. (R-PA): “Instead of incentivizing companies to use the resources that we have in Pennsylvania, Biden targeted American energy producers with new regulations that made natural gas and oil more expensive for American families.”

Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX): “60 percent of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is housed in my district.”

“SPR was not intended to be used as a political tool to bring down gasoline prices in an election year.”

Rep. Troy Balderson (R-OH): “Instead of supporting American energy producers and reversing their disastrous energy policies, the Biden administration decided to drain our energy reserves to the lowest levels since 1983. So who benefitted from this decision to drain these reserves? The Chinese Communist Party, now the largest government-controlled petroleum reserve in the world.”