Saturday, June 14, 2008

Action Alert from US Rep. Tim Walberg

I received the following email from my US Rep, Tim Walberg. Please read, and contact your Representative, asking them to sign the discharge petition on HR 3089, the No More Excuses Energy Act.

Taking Action on High Gas Prices

Just as with the Manhattan project or the race to the moon, breaking our dependence on foreign oil should be a national priority. Congress needs to allow an increase in America’s investment in our overall production of energy.

Despite fuel costs at levels previously only seen in Europe, leadership in this Congress refuses to increase American energy production. Instead, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and leading House Democrats would rather increase taxes on domestic energy production and increase our reliance on OPEC. We need leadership that is willing to take action.

This week I introduced a discharge petition to force a vote on a bill to increase U.S. energy production and invest in alternative sources of energy. The appropriately named No More Excuses Energy Act, H.R. 3089, would increase the supply of energy produced in America and begin to break our dependence on foreign oil.

This bill would immediately open up ANWR in Alaska for environmentally sensitive oil exploration. According to recent estimates, today America would receive one million barrels of oil per day from ANWR if President Clinton had not blocked exploration in 1996.

Outer-continental shelf exploration, new refineries, wind, natural gas and new nuclear power plants are also covered in this legislation. This bill would return much of our energy production back to the United States and create good paying American jobs, instead of sending hundreds of billions of dollars overseas to prop up countries like Venezuela that are opposed to American ideals.

Since Speaker Pelosi refuses to bring this bill to the House floor, a discharge petition is the only way to force a vote on this legislation. House rules state that a discharge petition must have 218 signatures (a simple majority) in order to bring a bill to the floor for a vote, and I am working hard to bring both Democrats and Republicans together in support of this bill. As of Thursday night, the petition had 137 signatures, and I encourage you to contact your friends in other districts and states to make sure their representatives support this effort.

We in south-central Michigan desperately need a comprehensive energy solution passed by this session of Congress. In the coming days, I will be meeting with local officials across the seventh district to discuss how high gas prices are affecting our communities.

High gas prices are affecting families, truckers, farmers, small business owners, emergency services and numerous other entities across Michigan. I am also very concerned about programs that are vital to our area but often are overlooked by the media, such as Meals on Wheels, veterans care programs, Hospice, blood donations, food banks, and many other great organizations who rely on volunteers with affordable transportation.

America cannot afford continued inaction by Congress, and we need to increase American oil and gas production in the short-term while we invest in new, clean American-made alternative energies in the long-term. Many in Congress may gloss over the current energy crisis in America, the majority of Americans cannot. The American people believe in expanding our American energy supply and developing alternatives to break our dependence on foreign oil. It is time Congress agrees and acts.