“Domestic oil production is currently at an eight-year high, and we must continue that momentum,” Owens said. “This legislation will provide new opportunities for responsible domestic drilling that will help us to reduce America’s reliance on foreign oil and create jobs.”
“There is no reason for the United States Senate not to consider the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act and send it to President Obama’s desk this summer,” Gardner said. “The seven bills in this package provide an opportunity for job growth and energy security.”
But if the bill manages to make it through Obama’s gatekeepers in the Senate, where energy-friendly Democrats such as Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) could give the legislation a bit of lift, it will be struck dead with the president’s veto pen — despite his claims of an “all-of-the-above” energy policy and assertions that Republicans are the ones killing jobs.
“The Administration strongly opposes H.R. 4480, which would undermine the Nation’s energy security, roll back policies that support the continued growth of safe and responsible energy production in the United States, discourage environmental analysis and civic engagement in Federal decision-making, and impede progress on important Clean Air Act (CAA) rules to protect the health of American families,” the Office of Management and Budget said in the statement of administration policy.
The conditions attached to a drawdown of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve — in every president’s campaign-year arsenal as a potential salve for consumer discontent over high pump prices — “could hinder the President’s ability to respond appropriately and lawfully to a disruption in the Nation’s energy supply.”
“Linking a drawdown of the SPR with the leasing of Federal lands for energy production is entirely without rational basis, either temporally, spatially, or in terms of the Nation’s energy needs,” the veto threat states.
The White House also takes issue with a more streamlined leasing process as outlined in the bill, saying it would turn back “oil and gas leasing reforms that have established orderly, open, efficient, and environmentally sound processes for energy development on public lands.”
It also accused the bill of blocking “progress on important protections for the health of American families” in terms of environmental regulations.
“While President Obama is busy picking winners and losers in the energy market, House Republicans have embraced an ‘all-of-the-above’ energy strategy,” said Republican Policy Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.). “…At a time of widespread joblessness, the good-paying work available in the energy sector would be welcome news for our fragile economy. American families and businesses are also desperately seeking the relief of lower, stabilized energy costs.”
“This administration’s lack of a plan to allow for the safe and reliable development of energy on federal lands severely limits our ability to achieve an economic and manufacturing renaissance,” McCarthy said. “The Domestic Energy and Jobs Act requires that the federal government plans for the responsible development of energy-rich, federally-owned lands. Doing this will increase American-made energy while creating American-made jobs. There is no reason for the Senate not to act on this common-sense American jobs bill.”