In yesterday’s speech defending his failed energy policies – under which gas prices have nearly doubled and are rising faster than ever – President Obama called for the kind of “all of the above” energy strategy long-championed by Republicans. But far from supporting “all of the above,” the Obama administration has spent more than three years blocking efforts to expand energy production and bring down gas prices, while pushing job-crushing tax hikes and taxpayer-backed loans to companies like Solyndra. Here’s a look:
The president even sought to pin the blame for rising prices elsewhere, citing instability in the Middle East as one example. But as this chart shows, the Obama administration simply hasn’t focused on reducing our dependence on foreign energy. In fact, energy production on federal lands has dropped by 11 percent.
While these represent only a fraction of the Obama administration’s efforts to stifle new energy production, here’s a look at some of the key data points from above:
- FEBRUARY 4, 2009 – Just months after President Obama’s Energy Secretary said, “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe,” the Obama administration begins “scrapping leases for oil-shale development” and cancels 77 leases for oil and gas production in Utah. Gas is $1.91 a gallon.
- MARCH 7, 2009 – ABC News says the White House is closely monitoring the expedited Solyndra loan project even as it was delaying new American energy production that would help make us less dependent on foreign energy. Gas is $1.94 a gallon.
- JUNE 27, 2009 - President Obama urges the Senate to adopt House Democrats’ “cap and trade” national energy tax, the same one the president once admitted would cause electricity rates to “necessarily skyrocket.” Then-GOP Leader Boehner later said the bill “would raise electricity prices, increase gasoline prices, and ship American jobs to countries like China and India.” Gas is $2.50 a gallon.
- JANUARY 7, 2010 – The Obama administration announces new bureaucratic hurdles to American energy production that Secretary Salazar admitted “could add delays to the leasing and drilling process.” Gas is $2.67 a gallon.
- MARCH 31, 2010 – Instead of opening new areas to energy exploration and development, President Obama blocks deep-ocean energy production on 60 percent of America’s Outer Continental Shelf. Gas is $2.80 a gallon.
- DECEMBER 1, 2010 – The president re-imposes and expands the moratorium on offshore energy production. Gas is $2.86 a gallon.
- JANUARY 2, 2011 – TIME reported that the Obama administration issued the first in a series of regulations on January 2 designed to unilaterally impose a national energy tax. Gas is $3.05 a gallon.
- MAY 5, 2011 – The White House issues a formal statement opposing House-passed Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act (H.R. 1230) and Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act (H.R. 1229), legislation designed to jumpstart American energy production, address rising gas prices, and help create new jobs. Gas is $3.96 a gallon.
- JUNE 21, 2011 - The White House opposes the House-passed Jobs & Energy Permitting Act that would unlock an estimated 27 billion barrels of oil and 132 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Gas is $3.65 a gallon.
- NOVEMBER 8, 2011 – The Obama Administration releases a plan for a five-year moratorium on offshore energy production, placing “some of the most promising energy resources in the world off-limits,” according to the House Natural Resources Committee. Gas is $3.42 a gallon.
- JANUARY 18, 2012 – President Obama rejects the bipartisan Keystone XL pipeline and the more than 20,000 jobs that would come with it. Gas is $3.39 a gallon, and rising faster and earlier than ever before.