June 10, 2008:SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON GAS PRICES:REP.TIM RYAN RESPONDS TO REPUBLICAN ATTACKS

Jun 10, 2008

 

Gas prices lasting legacy of nearly a decade of failed Republican policies, New Direction Congress building new energy future

 

(Washington, DC) Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-17) responded today to Congressional Republicans attempts to link the Democratic majority in Congress to higher gas prices. Citing seven bills that have currently passed the House directly dealing with energy independence and gas prices and three initiatives being deliberated by the Senate, Congressman Ryan called Republican attacks nothing but a distraction from what Congress needs to do to provide relief at the pump.

 

“Congressional Republicans don’t seem to live on the same planet that we do,” said Congressman Ryan.  “Many Congressional Republicans blindly voted for or supported Bush’s party line on energy policies that were written by oil company lobbyists under the cover of darkness in the Vice President’s office. Now they want you to believe that the Democratic majority, which has been in office for a year and a half, is responsible for the rise in gas prices?”

 

This week, the Senate has begun debate on measures that would place a tax on oil company windfall profits (S 3044), which have reached record levels. The money would be reinvested into new energy alternatives such as wind, nuclear, hydro-electric and coal power. In addition, the Senate has begun discussions on revoking tax rebates oil companies have been receiving as well as legislation that would allow the government to sue OPEC for price gouging. All three of these measures have companion legislation already tackled by the House of Representatives. These measures come on the heels of no less than seven bills that have already passed the House of Representatives on climate change and gas prices. Those bills include:

 

H.R. 6022 which temporarily suspends the fill of the Strategic Oil Reserve to begin a short-term correction in gas prices.

 

H.R. 6 which gives the FTC new authority to crack down on energy price manipulation and raises vehicle fuel efficiency for the first time in 32 years

 

H.R. 6074 which holds OPEC accountable for price fixing

 

H.R. 1252 which investigates retailers that may be price gouging and using high oil prices to unfairly inflate their rates

 

H.R. 5351 which ends unnecessary subsidies to oil companies and returns revenues from those subsidies to investments in clean, renewable energy

 

“This Congress has an actual plan to overturn the failed policies of the past,” said Congressman Ryan. “We are taking both short-term steps to try and bring down gas prices, and long-term steps toward ending our dependence on foreign oil. Misleading Congressional Republican attacks on this Congress’ record are a distraction from the hard work that needs to be done to help Americans at the pump. It’s time for them to step up and become partners in the solution, rather than play political games on an issue that strikes to the heart of our national security.”