Washington D.C. – House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) delivered the following remarks on the House Floor in support of H.R. 3826, Electricity Security and Affordability Act:
“Mr. Chairman, in 2008, in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, President Obama warned us that under his policies for energy, “electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket.”
“Now it appears, among high electricity costs, that this is a promise the President chose to keep.
“Today, millions of Americans are suffering from one of the coldest winters in recent memory – and in some cases, the most expensive. In New York, some homes are seeing their heating bills double.
“But it doesn’t have to be this way. The U.S. is currently enjoying a revolution in energy production – the energy that heats our homes and keeps us warm during the cold winter nights.
“Americans across the country should be celebrating this breakthrough. In an economy where the median income today is lower than in the year 2000, abundant energy should provide a sense of relief to strained budgets. But because of this Administration’s policies, Americans are simply left out in the cold with their energy bills.
“First, the Democrats tried cap and trade. But that failed in a Democrat-led Congress. Now, this Administration has proposed arguably the most expensive regulation ever by the EPA. One that would render the construction of any future coal power plant impossible through the mandating technology that isn’t readily obtainable.
“Today, coal accounts for 37% of total U.S. electricity production, and the EPA’s regulation will cost approximately $1,200 per household per year in lost income. That’s $100 more per month.
“But most importantly, this regulation will cause the greatest amount of harm – lost jobs, diminished incomes, and higher electricity bills – in areas where incomes are modest, as are the lifestyles of those who live there. It isn’t the rich on Fifth Ave. or in Beverly Hills that will be impacted; it’s the American working class.
“Communities like Indiana’s 2nd district – home to my friend Congresswoman Walorksi, or Ohio’s 4th district – home to my friend Congressman Jordan, or Wisconsin’s 1st district – home to my friend Chairman Ryan, or even Wisconsin’s 2nd district or Iowa’s 1st district – both represented by my colleagues on the other side; all will be unnecessarily hurt by this regulation.
“And for all of the talk from my colleagues on the other side of the aisle about fairness, this regulation is profoundly unfair.
“The Electricity Security and Affordability Act, sponsored by my friend Ed Whitfield, rejects the Administration’s backdoor tax on Americans’ energy bill. This legislation restores opportunity and fairness by ensuring more of Americans’ paychecks do not unnecessarily go to expanding electricity and heating costs.
“Mr. Chairman, at a time when energy production is booming, the cost for families should be dropping, not rising. I suppose the President actually held true to another promise. He has promised an “all of the above” energy policy. I had hoped that meant increasing energy production from all sources, not increasing prices on all consumers.
“I urge my colleagues to reject the President’s plan for higher energy costs and to support this legislation. I yield back.”