Offshore drilling eclipsed by Wall St. debacle

September 30, 2008

 

John McCain’s crowd-pleasing chants of “drill here, drill now” and “drill baby, drill” seem like distant echoes of a quainter time — before the debacle on Wall Street.

America’s quarter-of-a century ban on offshore drilling officially ended Tuesday but the focus on expanding exploration and the concern over surging oil and other commodity prices are being swept away by the financial tsunami in the broader economy.

Congress was inundated with a raft of energy bills but it is probable most will fall by the wayside as lawmakers deal with the $700 billion bailout later this week.

McCain, the Republican presidential candidate, scored points on the campaign trail this summer with his call to open up America’s coasts to more drilling, in a bid to aid the beleaguered driver paying almost half a sawbuck for a gallon of fuel.

At the time Democrats, including Barack Obama, were dead against the rigs again setting up off America’s shores.  Environmentalists scorned drilling as a panacea for high gas prices. Yet in August, with the polls showing support for drilling and oil still near record levels, the Dems made an about face to support limited offshore drilling.

Now Congress is subsumed by the bailout and members are itching to get on the campaign trail.

Many legislative efforts could go on hold for several months, and this could have wide ranging ramifications for industry. Congress  passed its stop gap funding bill last weekend and did not, as expected, tuck in wording to extend the ban on offshore drilling.

The Democrats vow to reinstate the ban but it likely won’t be next year. So don’t expect big oil to make a dash for the Grand Banks just yet, especially with weakening oil prices.

Comments

Typical Democrat response! The same reason we currently are dependent on foreign oil. Why would we want to be proactive, on the offensive, pursuing ways to reduce our dependence on resources owned by countries that hate us!!! Lets just wait until it becomes a problem again, then maybe we will do something-but most likely we will just blame Bush. If nothing gets done regarding the use of our domestic resources-THEY ALL SHOULD BE FIRED! ALL OF THEM. The vast majority of people in this country STILL want to use our resources while new technologies are developed. That is the will of the people and the last time I checked that is THEIR JOB!!! Pelosi and the Democrats do not need to save the planet, they need to pull their heads out of her A__!!!!

Posted by Crazydawgfan | Report as abusive
 

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