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Scalise: H.R. 1 is the Answer to Biden’s Energy Inflation

  • Scalise on H.R. 1 on the House Floor 3.30.23
Today, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) spoke on the House Floor prior to the passage of H.R. 1, the Lower Energy Costs Act. Leader Scalise slammed President Biden for erecting barriers to clean, American-made energy while begging foreign adversaries to produce dirtier alternatives. Leader Scalise also blasted the administration’s Green New Deal agenda, which is driving up household energy costs for American families. 
Click here or on the image above to view Leader Scalise's remarks.
Leader Scalise's remarks:

“Mr. Chairman, we all ought to be focused on helping low income families who are struggling. Families all across America are struggling under the weight of high inflation, all the spending that's come out of Washington under President Biden, but especially led and driven by this anti-American energy policy that we've seen from President Biden that has dramatically increased costs on American families.

“How are people getting hit by all of President Biden's anti American energy policies? You could see it right here: Gas prices, every time you go to the pump – 50 percent more people are paying. That takes money out of families' paychecks every single week when they go to fill up their vehicle. 

“You look at the utility bills people are paying – 40 percent more, 25 percent more in some areas of the country, that they're paying more in their utility bills, making it harder for them to heat their homes in a cold winter. As we approach summer, people want to turn on their air conditioner – they’re going to be paying a lot more. That takes money out of their pocket. And oh, by the way, when you look at what President Biden passed last year, he passed a $6 billion tax increase on natural gas, which is one of the drivers of higher electricity bills. 

“The good news is, Mr. Chairman, Republicans have answered the pleas that so many families have been raising by bringing the 
Lower Energy Costs Act to the Floor, H.R. 1. This is a bill focused on helping those families who have been struggling, who have been saying for the last two years, ‘Is anybody in Washington looking out for the families who are living paycheck to paycheck, who cannot make ends meet, who are sick and tired of runaway inflation and higher costs?’ And the answer is yes, House Republicans are here with an answer to this problem.

I think it's important to understand how we got here wasn't by accident. President Biden as a candidate said he was going to go and try to destroy the energy industry, stop drilling in America. Day one, the day President Biden took office, he started taking immediate action to attack American energy. He canceled the Keystone pipeline. He started putting his bureaucrats in place to put red tape in the way of American production of oil and natural gas. Now, you may think that's because the President is against pipelines, and the President is against oil and natural gas. He's not. 

“In fact, while the president, President Biden, was canceling the Keystone pipeline from Canada to the United States, he greenlighted a pipeline from Russia to Germany. So he bailed out Putin while he was sticking it to families in America, and they paid a higher price for it here at home. 

“Then, [at] the same time he was making it harder to produce energy in America, getting agencies to stop issuing permits, canceling lease sales, it wasn't because he was against oil and gas. No, because during that time that he was making it harder to get oil and gas in America, he was calling Vladimir Putin again. There's that name – calling Russia asking them to produce more oil for America. Putin said ‘No.’ 

“So then he got on Air Force One. Now all these climate justice warriors that fly all around the world in their private jets – Air Force One, the last time I checked, there's no solar panels on the wings of Air Force One. It takes jet fuel. He flew to Saudi Arabia, and he begged Saudi [Arabia] to produce more oil. So again, he's not against oil. He's just against American oil. Well, the Saudis said no, because the Saudis want a high price for gasoline. Who pays for that? Hardworking families. 

“So why don't we ask this question? If the President is not against oil – he's just against American oil – where are we getting our energy from? Where are we getting our critical minerals from? 

"They talk about electric vehicles as if everybody's driving electric cars. You know, one day maybe that's where the world goes. Technology still needs to advance a lot to get to that point, but today you might be five, less than 10 percent, of the cars on the road are electric. But if you're going to advance it like California says, they're going to ban fossil fuel cars in California. Of course, ironically, the governor days after he said he's going to ban fossil fuel cars, told people they cannot plug their electric car into the socket, because they're about to have power outages because the grid can't handle it. 

“Again, where does the energy come from? You don't plug that electric car into a tree. You've got to actually use baseload energy. Where does the battery come from, by the way, that you're charging? Well, we know right now the batteries are coming from China. 

“President Biden has made it very clear. He wants to make it harder to produce in America, but he's not against the production. He's going to countries like Russia, like China, like Venezuela – look at the list. Are these the people we want to become dependent on? So the question is no longer, do we or do we not get oil? It's where we get it from.

“Now, what Republicans have said and what H.R. 1 gets us back to is why don't we get our energy from America? It's a pretty straightforward answer. President Biden said no to America, but again, begging Russia, begging Saudi Arabia, begging Venezuela. He's trying to ease sanctions on Venezuela right now to get more of their oil. 

“Well, if it's all about carbon emissions and saving the planet, why don't we use the facts? Let's talk science for a moment. Who is the cleanest place to make things in the world? Who has the highest standards? I know some on the Left wake up every day and they just want to trash America. We have the best standards in the world, if you want to make oil anywhere in the world. 

“And again, they're not against oil. They just don't want it made in America. But look at the countries that they're begging to make more oil – countries that emit more carbon to make the same oil. Then they put that oil on a tanker and send it to the United States. Think of the lunacy of that policy. 

“We'd love to make it here, and put it on a pipeline, which is the safest way to transport it. They don't even want you to be able to build the pipelines. We ease that in the bill so we can actually build real infrastructure in America. So if you're worried about carbon emissions, the good news for you, the 
Lower Energy Costs Act solves that problem, because by making it in America, you make it in the best place in the world. 

“We also address critical minerals. You want to make computer chips? You want to make electric car batteries? They're going to be made somewhere in the world. Where are they going to be made? Right now, under President Biden's policies, it's almost impossible to get permits to mine for those minerals in America. So they're getting made. Problem is, they’re getting made in countries like China.

“Go look at the environmental standards of China. I know the President's Energy Secretary, just a few days ago, said that we can learn something from China on clean energy. I'm not sure if she's been traveling around America. I know she's traveling around to other countries. How could you possibly say we could learn from China? No one does it cleaner than America but many would argue no one does it dirtier than China. Why would you want to be making our country more dependent on China? 

In our bill, we actually say we can make those things in America again. We have them here. Look at the plaque right above the Speaker's rostrum: ‘Let us develop the resources of our land.’ Well, Mr. Speaker, we actually do fulfill that promise in this bill by letting us develop the resources in our land, not in China. They can go make stuff in China. We shouldn't be addicted to those products because President Biden shut off our ability to make things in America. 

“These policies make nothing but common sense. The good thing about it is, you don't just get the advantages of lower carbon emissions globally by passing this bill. For families across America who’re sick and tired of the lunacy and hypocrisy of the Left's policies, it lowers costs for families. 

There's only one free market country in the world that has abundant resources. That's America. You look at the other countries that we've become dependent on – they want a higher price. They're part of cartels like OPEC. We can make OPEC irrelevant if we make more energy in America. We've got the resources. 

“You can go to Port Fourchon in South Louisiana in my district and see areas where we can produce hundreds of thousands of barrels a day that are being closed off, that are being almost impossible for them to get permits. They can't even move pipelines. Go to Pennsylvania, where they can produce oil and natural gas, but they can't even get it to their neighbors in New York and the New England states, because they're abusing federal laws and all of these different agencies to stop the building of the infrastructure for pipelines. 

“And their argument is that they don't want oil and natural gas. Well, they're getting the oil and natural gas. They're just getting it from other countries, from tankers coming into New England states instead of pipelines made in America. None of this makes any sense. There's an answer. 

“The answer is, let's stand up for those families who are sick and tired of paying more when they know we've got the ability here to do it ourselves. We can become energy independent again. It's a national security issue, but it's a bread and butter kitchen table issue for those families who are struggling. Stop being dependent on foreign countries like President Biden’s made us. Let's get back to the sound principles that have been proven to work, and again, in the cleanest place to make things in the world: the United States of America.

“Let's stand up for those families who are sick and tired of paying too much. Let's actually get good policy put into law that fights for those families who have been left behind for far too long. Let's pass the 
Lower Energy Costs Act, let's get this country back on track, and let's lower prices for those families who are struggling. With that Mr. Speaker, I urge passage and I yield back the balance of my time.”