We are a country of innovators. We lead the world in development. We battle to be the best in technology on a day to day basis. Yet, when it comes to our energy policy and energy independence we are a third world country. Can you imagine someone calling the United States of America a third world country? We are unable or apparently unwilling to move ourselves to the twenty-first century.
How did we get here...to this time and place where we allow our national security, our economy, and our livelihood to be controlled and dictated by our enemies. Why has congress still not acted on the one thing affecting every person in this country? Are we truly so divided that we would allow this great nation to suffer for the success of one party over another?
One of the people who I have recently debated on a few blogs asked me what Melissa Hart, my previous House representative, and George Bush had done over the seven years she was in the House to tackle the energy crisis. I have to thank Mike because it made me invest even more time researching this issue and here is what I found.
In 1996, President Clinton vetoed a bill that was passed by the House and the Senate to begin drilling in ANWR.
In 2001, just after 9/11, President Bush pushed his energy agenda. At that time, the House was led by the Republican party, but the Senate was still controlled by the Democrats. The House passed a bill that would have allowed drilling in ANWR, as well as increased nuclear power, and put additional money towards alternative energy. The Senate shot down this bill. A similar bill was also shot down by the Senate in 2002 and 2003.
In 2004, the Republican party took over the Senate. Surely they did something at this point to solve our energy crisis. Again the House pushed through an energy bill. This time, the Democrats led by Senate Schumer of New York led a filibuster which kept the bill from coming up for a vote. They wouldn't even allow a vote. This filibuster continued and in two years the bill was never voted on.
In 2006, the Democrats took over both the House and the Senate. After two years in power, we have a real energy crisis that is now affecting our economy and our daily lives. I understand the knee jerk reaction of some to blame the President for the economy and the situation we find ourselves in today, but if you look back over the last twelve years, there is only one party that has held us hostage..................and it's not the Republicans.
Over 80% of Americans today say that gas prices are affecting their lives. Over 71% of Americans are for drilling in the OCS and almost as many are for drilling in ANWR. Apparently while Congress was on vacation, they heard an earful from their constituents. There are four months until the elections, take a look at who will do something about real energy independence and who will keep talking about energy independence.