McCain calls for more oil drilling in new TV ad

June 27, 2008

WASHINGTON — In his most controversial television ad yet, Republican John McCain calls for more domestic oil drilling.

“We went to the moon, not because it was easy, but because it was hard,” the ad’s narrator says. “John McCain will call America to our next national purpose — energy security.”


Domestic drilling is not a popular option in states like Florida and California that have oil reserves offshore. McCain also promises to work for lower gas prices and alternative energy sources, tapping into an issue that’s uppermost in voters’ minds.

Democrats said the ad misrepresents McCain’s track record, and dug up several Senate votes where he opposed spending on renewable energy research.

“In his 25 years in Washington, Senator McCain has been a part of the problem, not the solution on energy independence,” said Democratic National Committee spokeswoman Karen Finney.


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

Mr. McCain wants to drill, Mr. & Mrs. Reader. Isn’t that just so typical of republicans? Drill, cut & slash is their motto when it suits them.

For instance, by 1 vote last night, senate republicans prevented a floor vote on a veto-proof bill from the house of representatives that would prevent a 10.6% cut in MEDICARE reimbursements to physicians. In turn, this directly affects military retirees over the age of 65, whose TRICARE medical benefits are tied to MEDICARE.

I don’t know how Mr. McCain voted or failed to vote, but his party failed to vote to protect elderly former Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors & Marines.

Drilling in ANWR or off the otherwise pristine shores of America the Beautiful isn’t going to help anybody except the privileged class of millionaires, super privileged class of billionaires and the wealthiest of the wealthy.

Likewise, cutting medical benefits for aging Veterans isn’t going to help anybody either.

What are the republicans thinking…led by Mr. McCain? Maybe they’re not thinking. I’ll opt for the latter at this point

OK Jack

Posted by OK Jack | Report as abusive

McCain is right. we need American Energy.

The plan to fix America’s energy crisis and indeed the entire economy is here; ERICAN-ENERGY-PLAN.htm

This plan outlines what we as a nation have to do to achieve a real measure of energy independence in the next 3 years. It is all up to us here in the United States – we don’t have to get permission of others.

Posted by Peter Sterling | Report as abusive

I think Mc Cain needs to keep pounding this message to the American people, Pelosi had a commonsense plan to reduce gas prices… did not work.. next the dems in the house sued OPEC. guess that did not work either.. now they are crying use it or loose it… that law has been in effect since 1992…now drill the speculators.. should ask hillary about speculatring in cattles futures.. if oil goes down the speculators lose.. Dems would love that. Clinton veoted drilling for oil in the 90’s, saying it would take 10 years or so.. well if it takes 10 year so be it.. lets do what the Democrats always spew “DO IT FOR THE CHILDREN.’

Posted by maxine | Report as abusive

“controversial television ad yet”

No bias here

Posted by Exton | Report as abusive

We must get energy Indepence,I am 68 year old replace on my job by someone for half what they were paying me,plus they will not recieve any befit.My power bill,LP gas has went out of sight.I went to Vietnam in 1965 and be paying all kind of taxs every since i was 16,WE have plenty of oil and coal,to run on until other Energy can be found.Corn is our main food,and it used as much Energy as it produce.Nancy Peliso,is standing in the way and she want even repliese to an E-mail,My self and lot of older folk will Freeze to death this winter if the cost don:t come down.Starve to death if they keep on puting corn in the gas tank.

Posted by avery davis | Report as abusive

Offshore oil drilling is not a solution to America’s energy problem – our reserves are too small to truly make a dent in our dependence on foreign oil. No, offshore oil drilling is a solution to keeping US oil companies profits at record levels. If keeping our oil companies rich helped the American people at large, don’t you think we would have seen some kind of return on that investment by now? There is NO EVIDENCE that these supply-side solutions will help the average American. Wake up people! This is only going to lead to polluted coastlines with little to no difference at the pump for you and me.

Posted by Bane | Report as abusive

Want to lower prices, cut the demand. Start car-pooling, biking, driving more efficient cars, or drive slower and more consistently. Nothing will affect oil prices more than a surplus created by reduced demand. People who drive 10 – 15 MPG vehicles (whether they can afford to or not) can reduce their impact by ditching the gas guzzler for something more efficient. Collectively our efforts will result in a much FASTER and more dramatic impact on pricing than anything the politicians can do.

Posted by erkm37 | Report as abusive

All these damn pin head Dems/liberals/socialist/wacko enviromentalist are why we are in the problems we are in now, if we had drilled in ANWR 20 years ago we would have the energy to supply us at a reasonalble price so we could start finding other forms of energy. Iam really getting tired of hearing all these people like OK Jack (who dosent know jack) and Bane wine and go on but wont do a damn thing to get us out of this mess. Maybe we need to elect obama(osama)so this country can fall we can then start over and set it up right.

Posted by bill | Report as abusive

Ten years before we see anything out of off-shore drilling.
There are so many ways to achieve energy efficiency that don’t involve oil.
But McCain is in the pocket of the oil companies.
The same ones who steered us into Iraq. Which destabilized the oil supply. Which resulted in gas for $4.00+ a gallon.
We are living “Goldfinger” but with oil instead of gold.

Posted by shelleybear | Report as abusive

Regardless of how you feel about it, drilling, and other exploration/extraction IS GOING TO HAPPEN!
In less than two weeks, the polls on offshore drilling have gone from 52% support from ALL AMERICANS, to 74% this mid week.
Mark my words, that will go up on July 8th when a huge # of MAD Americans come back from the most expensive July 4th holiday in history. I expect to see drill now support up to 80%+ by July 10th.
The Democrats will either flip flop, or lose EVERYTHING come November.
You watch, when the Congress gets back from July break, within two weeks, bills to drill will pass.
Oh, and if you are watching the Rasmussen and Gallup daily polls, you will see that as support for Drilling has increased, so has the support for John McCain.
Gallup daily has had McCain and Obama even for three days. Obama down from +7 two weeks ago. -Daily-Obama-McCain-Still-Tied-44.aspx
Rasmussen daily has Obama +4, down from +9 three weeks ago. nt/politics/election_20082/2008_presiden tial_election/daily_presidential_trackin g_poll
It has done exactly what I said.
Followed the drill support polls.

Posted by RoBoTech | Report as abusive

I agree with Robo Techs political observations.

Technically it will help little to drill ANWAR, West, East coast. Maybe we can get 1Million Barrels per day out of it. Technically we need to use this oil to help transition to sustainable energy.

The key question is what political strategy is needed to use the forbidden oil for transition?

Option 1: Continue to Block Alaska/Off shore drilling. Try to force the immediate use of alternatives. The downside to this strategy is that it perpetuates the myth that off-shore oil is the answer to all our problems.

Option 2: Pass off-shore drilling and watch how prices continue to go up. The myth is popped and it will be evident that all our problems were not solved. The risk is oil prices come down for other reasons that are associated with off-shore drilling, we take no actions toward alternatives and we also consume the small oil cushion we need to transition.

Posted by Think Ahead | Report as abusive

In such a national emergency in which we are all now
experiencing, we, as Americans must realize that we must have an all encompassing solution to our challenge. It must be threefold in the attack. Firstly, our national economic machine must be fueled, we must drill our own oil to counteract the need for OPEC oil. The lack of fuel will mean that the machine will come to a halt! That results in no taxes, no food and total economic disaster. Secondly, we must conserve the resources that we are producing and already possess. Americans, we are at war! Will we run out of the ability to buy foreign fuel(low dollar, decreasing OPEC production) before we find an alternative energy solution? Lastly, we must be innovative! We need to invent practical solutions that the common American can afford. We need to decrease government mandates on vehicle minimum weights and DOT approval before inventors can try out their inventions. The liberty to innovate needs to implemented, immediately. In summary, feed our American machine by producing and conserving while we, as AMERICANS, innovate a lasting solution making us energy independent not just for us but for our future generations.

Posted by Steve | Report as abusive

Extremely well said Steve!!!

The voices of reason need to perculate up into national policy.

Posted by Think Ahead | Report as abusive

We need more oil for now…so drill and work on alternative fuels. That being said you greenie weenies…that use our oil and who like to fish come down to Louisiana and ask where to fish offshore. Everyone will tell you to pick an oil rig…they are man made reefs with great saftey records. So get a grip and a life.

Posted by Jim | Report as abusive

I have heard that the Chinese are drilling 15 miles of the florida keys. if he chineese are able to drill into our reserves what are we going to use for reserves. we ust develop additional energy sources now

Posted by karl | Report as abusive

Offshore drilling will produce a 20 month supply of oil, IF it was all sold in the US, but Republicans have already said that it should be sold on the world market, so all it will really produce, AT BEST, is a few cents price decline when it becomes available many years from now. Typical Republican, selling an idea to benefit wealthy corporations by convincing the average man of non-existent benefits for him.

Posted by Gary N | Report as abusive

Are we really to believe that a forien naion would invest in offshore drilling at our international border line for a 20 month supply of oil.

Posted by karl | Report as abusive

In 2005 the US exported 268 million barrels of oil ( 06/130522.php ) which is about equal to optimistic guesses about the production from ANWR when oil production is allowed. So why isn’t there a big political effort to impress people with the importance of actually using domestically produced oil rather than export all that ANWR can produce? A logical explanation is that such an approach doesn’t enrich oil companies as much since production is what they make money from regardless of where oil is sold. Nevertheless, producing more domestic oil seems to be a political calling these days. I think it is a great service to oil companies that so many people are so willing to support the oil business by begging to produce even more US oil that we can export. That is why I invest heavily in oil stocks. I suggest everyone invest heavily in oil stocks, then (after taking a nap), fill the tank and drive, baby, drive. Meanwhile, I’ll surf the internet and monitor my oil stock profits :)

ANWR has at most 4.3 billion barrels of reserves. US consumption is 22 million barrels a day, or about 6 months if ANWR were the sole source. ANWR is not a big deal as far as somehow easing oil prices. But at $140 plus per barrel, someone is going to make hundreds of $$ billions on ANWR oil production if it finally begins sometime after 2018.

Posted by OilBaron | Report as abusive

America’s infrastructure is based on oil. All the trucks, planes, trains, ships, that deliver all goods to market run on oil. All automobiles, as well as all the gas stations across America run on oil. All petroleum based products, run on oil. Although alternative fuels most definitely should be developed, in the mean time America must have oil to keep our economy from screeching to a halt. In addition, our national security requires energy independence ASAP, so that we are not transferring all our wealth to foreign countries who do not like us, and who can cripple us by turning off the spigot, disrupting oil transport to us, or arbitrary oil price hikes. These are all reasons why we must be drilling for more oil right now and right here in the U.S.A. … ASAP. Nancy Pelosi and her cronies stubborn commitment to petty party politics, instead of realistic concern over our national interest, even in the face of 76% of Americans who want off shore drilling now, will end up in bringing America to its knees.

Posted by Howard | Report as abusive

The rouge countries who sell us our oil are trying to topple us as a world power, they will do it because of oil prices.

We need to stop the fighting among ourselves. We must start drilling for more oil on, in and around our own lands. We then in return need to get going on alternative fuels in a super fast track way. With the help of alternative fuels. We can reduce our thirst for oil. At some point the oil we drill for will be used for certain needs. Jet fuel, roadways, plastics, etc. price will drop. we will never be able to get away from oil completely. We will need it for some products but why not from our own country or Canada. Then by having our own alternative fuels in place, using CNG (temp) price of natural gas will soar think about our home heating.
Natural Gas can also come from Oil Drilling

We need to get some vehicles turned over into electric, self recharging vehicles. When they drive they recharge no plug in at night. Then bio fuel cars and big rigs. Run them on natural oils and alcohol (ethanol) This would create many jobs in America, processing plants could be maintained within state lines, which in turn reduces transportation cost.

Homes that are running heat on heating fuel (comes from oil) would have to be fazed out. Ban those type of furnaces. Homes could be heated with NG,NATURAL OILS,WOOD PELLETS, WOOD.

The sad thing about all this is it is a political issue, Congress will always try to throw things in a bill. It is a this for that and then no one wins. This has been going on for years.

Write your congress person and tell them to start doing there job or they will lose there job just like many Americans. Tell them your views keep them simple as they could get confused easily. Let them know how they vote will make a difference on how you vote. Everyone can contact congress by email.
They need to hear from you.

We The People need to stand up to CONGRESS. We pay there salary and healthcare, etc.

Posted by John | Report as abusive