WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor highlighting historically high gas prices, the Biden administration’s domestic energy policy decisions, and how they impact the crisis in Ukraine.
SKYROCKETING GAS PRICES: “People in West Virginia woke up this morning. And according to AAA, the average gas price in West Virginia is $4.12 per gallon. Some parts of the country are paying more—probably the part of your country, Mr. President—paying more than $5 or even more than $6 per gallon of regular gas. Just up the street here in Washington, D.C., at the gas station close to the Senate office buildings, it’s $5.19 per gallon. We have surpassed the highest recorded average of gas prices ever. And that is quite alarming. Unfortunately, this has been all too predictable, given the Biden administration’s domestic energy policy actions.”
PERFECT STORM: “We’re seeing the importance of energy independence play out in real time with the destruction—horrifying destruction—in Ukraine. Because of the Biden administration policies that I’ve just outlined, we are not able to immediately provide an energy backstop to our European allies trying to break their Russian oil and gas habit. They’re begging for our coal as we speak. It’s the perfect storm for a global energy crisis.”
ENERGY PRODUCTION HYPOCRISY: “Well, we’ve seen reports that the administration is discussing a possible trip soon to Saudi Arabia to convince the kingdom to produce more oil. Well he’s tried this—and oh, by the way, they won’t even take the President’s phone call. We know the administration is considering easing sanctions on Venezuela, so they will produce more oil. And once again, President Biden opened the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, even though it didn’t work last time, costs the taxpayer, and depletes our own stockpile—which we created from the last oil crisis to be used when the United States faces another crisis. But incentivizing oil and gas production here in our own country or letting it move forward? Nope. So according to the administration and their actions, Saudi and Venezuela oil and OPEC oil is good, but American oil is bad.”
BEGGING FOR AMERICAN LEADERSHIP: “Right now, the world is begging for American leadership. Ukraine is begging for American leadership. Europe is begging for American leadership. And that includes energy leadership. Putin is emboldened every day that the Biden administration flails on this issue…We cannot leave Ukrainian patriots in our European allies at the mercy of Moscow. We must address the poor energy policy decisions of the Biden administration in order to unleash full American energy production, support our allies in Europe, and stop funding Putin’s war against the Ukrainians. We should be acting quickly. The security of the free world depends on this.”