WASHINGTON – House Republicans on Thursday scuttled a bill that Democrats hoped would help lower gasoline prices by forcing the Energy Department to release 70 million barrels of oil — about a three-day supply — from the national stockpile.
Democrats vowed that the action would have produced immediate relief at the pump, as was the case with similar releases in 1991, 2000 and 2005. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve now holds about 700 million barrels.
Despite winning a clear 268-157 majority, the measure still lost. Democratic leaders had brought the proposal up for debate under rules requiring a two-thirds vote to pass.
But passing the bill by just a majority would have meant allowing Republicans to force a vote on new offshore drilling leases.
“They’re hiding from a vote,” said GOP leader John Boehner of Ohio. “They’re scared to death to allow us to … force their members to vote on drilling.”
How Local Congress Critters Voted on the measure:
NC-05 Virginia Foxx….Nay
NC-10 Patrick McHenry…Nay
NC-11 Heath Shuler…Yea
This election is very important, and the Senate and US House Races are now more important than ever. Due to their boneheadedness, the GOP will be playing defense this year as they attempt to prevent the Democrats from obtaining a supermajority of 60 seats in the Senate (which is likely to happen), and increasing their lead in the House.
One way out of this “prevent defense” is for McCain to choose an acceptable conservative running mate with credibility in economic matters, and I believe that to be Mitt Romney. This wish to pry Bobby Jindal away from his state before he can fix it is stupid. Jindal has decades ahead of him before he need to consider running for President.