“Drive Small Cars And Wait For The Wind” By Betsy Newmark

The Hill reports on all the agony that the Democrats are going through as they try to address energy prices without allowing a vote on expanding drilling. They’re afraid that, heavens, such a vote might actually succeed. It seems that there are a lot of Democrats out there who sense the voters’ frustration with high gas prices and have made the connection to the limits on production that we have allowed.

One pro-drilling Democrat predicted that the backlash against Congress for gas prices could rival the outrage voters felt about the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal.

Another, Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-La.), is frustrated at not being listened to.

“My concern with my leadership is that they’re not letting all the people in the room to present the facts,” said Melancon, a proponent of more offshore drilling. “Where are all the pro-oil legislators? I’m not in the room. I don’t know who is. My feeling is we are not being all-inclusive to pass legislation that can get through the Senate and avoid a veto.”

For now, though, there will be no legislation to pass, as the only energy-related action this week will occur at the committee level.

Republicans may try to continue a strategy they demonstrated before recess by forcing drilling votes as energy amendments to bills being considered at the committee level, including appropriations bills.

And Republicans may go one step further by trying to get amendments added to the energy and water appropriations bill, a likely contender to see the floor this week.

“We’re going to demand a pro-production energy vote before Congress goes home for the month of August,” said House Republican Conference Chairman Adam Putnam (Fla.). “We’ve tried to highlight efforts to solve America’s energy problem a thousand ways to Sunday, and [Democrats] keep pulling them from committee, pulling them from the floor and kicking the can down the road.”

Exactly when Democrats will change their present course and bring an energy bill to the floor remains uncertain.

“Right now, our strategy on gas prices is ‘Drive small cars and wait for the wind,’ ” said a Democratic aide.

Now that’s a quote that you can expect to hear more in this election season.

The wonder is that they even get 9% to think that they’re doing a good job.

The content was used with the permission of Betsy’s Page.

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