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August 12th, 2008
05:39 PM ET

Should ban on offshore drilling be lifted?

ALT TEXT
Nancy Pelosi now says she’d be open to a vote on offshore drilling. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP PHOTO)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has changed her mind when it comes to allowing a vote on offshore drilling.

Until now, Pelosi has called the idea a "hoax" and has refused to allow it to come to the floor for a vote, but now she's suggesting she'd be open to just that. But there are strings… lots and lots of strings.

Pelosi says a vote on offshore drilling would have to be part of a larger energy package that included things like releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Pelosi indicated that she might even back a package that includes drilling – if things like renewable energy resources are also included. Plus orthodontic work for her grandchildren.

As Americans got hammered with record high gas prices this summer, Republicans have been pushing hard for a vote to lift the ban on offshore drilling. Some Republicans even stayed in Washington during the summer recess to continue to demand the vote. It's one of the few issues the American people seem to agree with the Republicans on – which is why Pelosi decided to change her mind. It changes with the wind direction and the wind on offshore drilling began blowing against her. A recent poll shows 69% of Americans favor offshore drilling, just 30% oppose it.

Pelosi is following in the footsteps of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, who also recently reversed his position on the issue – saying he'd be open to drilling if it's part of a larger energy package. And John McCain also opposed offshore drilling before changing his mind and supporting it, too. Don't you love how they all stand firm on their principles?

Here’s my question to you: Should the ban on offshore drilling be lifted?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Steve from Atlanta writes:
Don't lift the ban. The American people support it because they want cheaper gas. People rarely can see beyond their bank accounts. What's best for the future is to have high gas prices and move towards alternative energy. Cheaper gas doesn't accomplish that. We elect leaders to do what's best for society long-term, not what makes the whining masses happy short- term.

Vicki from Overland Park, Kansas writes:
The ban on offshore drilling should be lifted after the oil companies prove that there is no oil on the sites they already lease. Also, they should agree to build new refineries and agree to not sell the oil to other countries.

Lisse from Tucson, Arizona writes:
Read this week's New Yorker. Offshore drilling will provide 18 months of oil in what is a world market... Worth it?

Ken writes:
Just where are we going to drill offshore for oil? Within the palatial estate views of the power elite or where we second class citizens live? You can bet your Benjamins on this answer!

Russ from Illinois writes:
Yes, Jack, it should be lifted, providing it's part of a larger plan for renewable energy and if the president releases oil from the reserves. The Dems are giving ground and now it's time for the Republicans to give a little as well.

Tim from Vero Beach, Florida writes:
Dear Jack, No, it shouldn't be lifted. The black goop is destroying our environment, save what is left for grease. We need electric vehicles now. We hate the oil companies and the oil men who keep slithering their way into the White House, Congress and the Senate and we've had enough.

Stephen from Pensacola, Florida writes:
Lift the ban, if you want to permanently destroy Florida's housing market: Imagine the rush to buy Gulf Front, Drilling Rig View condominiums.


Filed under: Offshore Drilling • US Economy
soundoff (203 Responses)
  1. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    Jack

    Not without specific rules. There are other leases that can and should be opened up first.

    It's just pandering at this point in the campaign. The demand for it will go away November 4.

    Thanks

    August 12, 2008 at 2:06 pm |
  2. Jackie in Dallas

    In areas that have already been investigated and show signs of having oil/gas reserves worth exploiting - but which do NOT lie in reef areas, or areas that are crucial to our ecology, yes. Random drilling, especially in reef areas that are the breeding places for many fish that we need as food sources, absolutely not until there is a plan in place to reduce the danger of any ecological damage!

    Even if they find oil or gas in commercially viable amounts (a 1 in 5 chance at best), disrupting our food chain for a short term solution to a problem we can solve by drilling in less vulerable areas is INSANE.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  3. Jim in BC

    There was no oil shortage in the 70's, 80's or 90's. There is no oil shortage now. Oil prices kept going up until the oil companies got the
    political concessions they wanted.

    And they got them. Both candidates agreed to lift the offshore drilling bans and the oil prices are going down fast.

    If they either flip or flop again... back up go the prices.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:10 pm |
  4. Esther Malka cuyahoga falls ohio

    No they should not be lifted we need to get off the oil addiction and find something new something that will clean our planet and not destroy it. we need to get away from sending 700 billion anually out of this country. where is the country I was born in where anything was possible where people had ingenuity and decencies and worked hard and got up before the worms and did things for each other. please tell me where you have taken her cause i long to be with those people and not the ones who only think in terms of money.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  5. mitchell ,arkansaw

    east coast=hurricanes
    west coast=earthquakes
    drilling offshore?=disaster waiting to happen

    August 12, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  6. Violentone

    How bout we just ban politicians?

    August 12, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  7. sarah, indiana

    yes jack it should. I for one would like to see the U.S. get free of the biggest, most dangerous terrorist organization on the planet, it calls itself OPEC. this group can decimate our economy and the world economy in about 3 seconds. i think we should use every means possible to replace our oil addiction with clean technology but that is years away, and for now we need lots of oil. we should never pay people who hate us for a commodity that we depend on, ever. we have lots of oil right here at home and people who need jobs who would love to help get the stuff into the market.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  8. David Alexandria, VA

    Yes - no doubt about it. We can do this in an ecologically safe manner and should. We should be developing non-fossil fuel alternatives as one of the top national priorities

    Even if a drop of oil doesn't come of it for 5 or 10 years, we're going to still need it then. And I would much rather be buying it from "us" than from "them."

    This is a n absolute no-brainer. It's become a politcal ping-pong game that need to stop immediately.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:16 pm |
  9. Willow, Sheldon Iowa

    What I'm curious about is why they do not drill ONshore. There are large areas of the west that want them to drill for oil, it increases their economy, their tax base, etc. in these small towns. Colorado, Wyoming, etc. are willing to have these drillers come in and drill. there are large areas of the west that could be used. OK, TX, NM. These are safer areas. I think if they could drill safely and carefully, in certain areas, I would agree. But I hesitate to say definitely yes.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
  10. Kelly, Philadelphia

    It should at least be thoroughly investigated to determine the short and longterm impact it would have. The GOP is willing to exploit the current situation to drag themselves out of the mud during a campaign year and often when anyone has wrong motivations, the effect can actually be adverse if all angles aren't explored.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
  11. Rob Hancox, San Antonio, TX

    The call for drilling got louder as oil and gas prices hit all-time highs. Regardless of why they (prices) got there, they are now coming down because $140 for a barrel of oil and $4 for a gallon of gas were just too much for the economy to handle.

    Does that mean we can forget the "more drilling" issue? No. Do we need to wean ourselves from foriegn oil? You bet ya. Is drilling the only answer? I doubt it.

    I say, compare the projected effects of more drilling to the projected effects of implementing alternative energy sources. If alternatives can result in the same effects as more drilling in the same amount of time, or sooner, then why drill?

    It's all about where to spend our money. But without proper research and consideration of all choices, making the popular choice, i.e. more drilling, may turn out to be a grave mistake.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:19 pm |
  12. Jordan-Iowa

    It depends on what you want low gas prices or carbon emmisions to sky rocket. Why dont we put oil out of the question and start testing alternitive fuels. I live in Iowa and i know about all this ethanol stuff. Ethanol is very over rated by the time you use all the diesel fuel in the combine and the trucks you use to transport it your are not gaining anthing and you are just using food as fuel. Where is good ol Al Gore in this I am sure he has some plan. What a joke he is.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  13. Erico 33139 FL

    The ban should be lifted ASAP. Lets place at least ten offshore platforms north of venezuela, in International waters. We'll just have to tell Chavez that we're eliminating Venezuela's export tariffs.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  14. Michael, Lorain, Ohio

    Drilling is only a band-aid over the problem. Oil is a finite source of energy and we need long term solutions.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:36 pm |
  15. KarenB in Polk City, Florida

    Yes. Yes. Yes. should never have been banned to begin with.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:37 pm |
  16. George

    Why drill, are the oil companies not making enough profit? Don't think so, and drilling is not going to solve anything. It wouldn't be a drop in the bucket, and we wouldn't see any relief for at least five years. Now is the time to kick the oil habit, and do something that will ease the pain of so many at the pumps, and that is making plans, and carrying them out with alternative power sources, and technology. To do anything else will only keep us dependent on the oil companies.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  17. David Richards

    Failed oilman George W Bush said we're addicted to oil. You don't cure a crack addict by giving him more crack. Successful oilman T Boone Pickens says we can't drill our way out of this crisis. T Boone knows how to cure an addict. I trust T Boone Pickens' energy policy more than I trust George W Bush's. No, we shouldn't open up offshore drilling.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  18. Beartrack Truckee,CA

    NO This is all a fraud by the administration to get more oil for the oil criminals. This has been their objective from the beginning. What we should be doing is growing more hemp. Makes good ropes for hanging the whole bunch as enemies of this country.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  19. Terry from North Carolina

    Jack
    Definately not, let the oil companies use the land they have already leased and not yet used. This is getting way out of hand, We should be concentrating, on developing alternative fuels, instead of tearing up our shoreline.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  20. Jonathan, Hartford, CT

    At this point, I do not care. Jobs have been outsourced. Joblessness is up. Prices are up. Inflation is up. Only politics have become cheap.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  21. Jay in Texas

    No. We have got to stop giving in to every desire BIG OIL has. They already have plenty of places to drill for new oil at and, then, what about all those oil wells they capped when oil prices were low? I used to travel to the Texas coast for vacation in the early 1980s. I always came home with several ice chests packed full of frozen trout. Now, I can go to the same place and fish for hours without catching a single trout. Something is terribly wrong. Until we learn different, I will blame the oil drilling in the Gulf for the disappearance of the fish.
    Brownwood, Texas

    August 12, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  22. Marilyn from Louisiana

    The answer is "Yes" and "No". There should be a full investigation in this matter. Republican say yes......Demo say maybe. I believe the Republican's are using this as a politcal game. If the elections were not about 4 months away... they would be saying NO. McCain was not in favor of the drilling until a month ago. We truly need new "Leadership".

    August 12, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  23. Scott - Wichita, Kansas

    The Democrats are trying to make this look just like the Republicans are just Oil-hungry idiots. They always say it has to be "part of a bigger plan." What they don't mention is that it was ALWAYS part of a bigger plan, not just to make us energy independent, but to get rid of our desire for oil for good. People listen to Democrats over Republicans these days for some reason, not realizing that both parties are idiots, and just want to make the other look bad, instead of actually getting some work done for once! This ends my rant, I feel a lot better now.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  24. Mike

    No, it should not because it won't do a darned thing for gas prices. It's true that 69% of people think drilling is a good idea but, if you remember, a higher number supported the invasion of Iraq. That hasn't turned out so well, has it? If Pelosi wants off-shore drilling to be a part of a compromise energy policy, then that's good. Being willing to compromise to get something done has been lacking for so many years in Washington. Isn't being gridlocked because of ideological purity what you've been complaining about for years, Jack?

    August 12, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  25. Mark - Asheville, NC

    Yes. Do everything.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  26. maricelle

    that ban should not be lifted. the price of gas will not come down just because we drill the oil here. oil-producing countries have lower gas prices because their government subsidizes it. the neocons will never let that happen. they will just scream socialism. so americans, open your eyes and your ears. prices for gas and oil will never be the way it was in the 90s. it is now time for us to change our habits so we won't be so dependent on oil.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  27. Dave in MO

    Absolutely! Look how much gas prices have come down just by Bush lifting the ban. Drill everywhere and anywhere! Shoot I live in Saint Louis to hell with the elitist on the coast.

    August 12, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  28. Will from San Jose, CA

    Blind stands on principles and posturing over progress has given us our useless do nothing Congress. If limited oil drilling can be used as a carrot to get Republicans to accept higher fuel economy standards, oil futures regulation and alternative energy research then it is a worthwhile trade.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  29. Mike, Albuquerque, NM

    Even if they did reopen the offshore wells there is no guarantee they would sell the oil to the US. The oil companies want to sell the oil on the world market. If they, or we the people, invested as much in biofuels and other alternative energy we would be in a better position to control our own energy needs. That is what the energy debate should be about. Not in finding more ways to benefit the oil companies. It is because we didn't follow the policies of Jimmy Carters energy plan thirty years ago that we are in this mess now.
    Can we please learn from our mistakes and do better?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  30. Jenna Wade

    Should the ban on offshore drilling be lifted?

    Sure, why not. Let's drill of Cape Cod, Kennebunkport ME, Myrtle Beach SC, The Hamptons NY, etc..

    Jenna Wade
    Roseville CA

    August 12, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  31. bo

    Off shore drilling is just a ploy by the Republicans to get more votes from a public tired of the rising gas costs. Factcheck.org states the oil companies are currently stockpiling lease approvals from the government to the tune of 10,000 unused options to drill. You can speculate on why they would do this, but the smart money is on driving the price up. I think the democrats should call their bluff and agree with them to let individual states decide whether to drill or not. That would be the last we would hear about the issue if they did.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  32. Dwayne (Atlanta)

    No one will see any benefits from this action anytime soon. Remember the Republicans think this will bring down the price of oil, based on fact that one day we will be able to tap into our own resources. Everything is a mind game with them, so let them drill until they hit their brains.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  33. Linda, Ruther Glen, Va

    Yes, but restriction, restriction, restrictions. There should be no loose and easy and everything that can be done to secure the well being of our waters.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  34. Anne

    Shouldn't this decision be made by the individual states? The residents there are the ones who will have to look at the oil platforms and deal with the gunk that floats in with the tide whenever there's a spill. This is not a national issue, and the Constitution says that items not enumerated as federal rights should be left to the states. Congress should butt out.

    Anne
    Texas

    August 12, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  35. Ann from S.C.

    I agree that the ban on off shore drilling should be lifted, and I agree with those who want it to be a part of a larger energy package. The ban made sense when gas was cheap, but now that the price is less stable, we need to change the way we view our energy consumption. The way we waste energy is unacceptable – we need to conserve all our resources. We are intelligent enough to figure out ways to use alternative forms of energy. We also need to be less dependent on foreign countries for oil, therefore we need to find our own sources. That, to me, isn't backing off our principles, but rather adapting to changing circumstances.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  36. Tom in Desoto Texas

    There's no reason to lift the ban. Oil companies have plenty of sights they can drill now without lifting the ban. They should explore them first. If it's true that refineries are almost at capacity now getting more oil will not decrease the price of gas. Now that the oil companies have billions of profits there should be at least one refinery on the drawing board, unless if course the executives have earmarked the profits for salaries and bonuses

    August 12, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  37. Don Hunt

    This is the time to change from an oil dependent economy to a sustainable energy policy. Look at what is happening know as an opportunity to acquire the know how and infrastructure to reduce energy costs and pollution levels. Challenge the people and take away the impediments to achievement and we will all be better off. Don't let big business lead us into another dead end.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  38. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    This whole thing is beginning to sound like a gold rush for gold diggers, big oil companies. It's nothing but a well planned fear tactic that is no more than an illusion.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  39. Keith - Cleveland, OH

    Yes Jack. I cannot understand why the cost of oil would not go down if we produced more in the U.S. and imported less from the far East.

    Also, there has never been any spills drilling for oil... the spills have only been in transporting the oil..

    This is all jus common sense, which the congress is too busy playing party politics to notice.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  40. douglas gengler

    yes, and give the big oil companies tax relief since their profits have been marginal, with one hitch, i want to be the CEO of each company for one day so i can afford to buy the gas they will sell us.

    doug in knoxville arkansas

    August 12, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  41. Ryan - Champaign, IL

    Absolutely not. This is just another stunt by Big Oil and the cronies they've helped to elect to ransom our publicly owned lands. Media outlets haven't helped by pushing their talking-points and disinformation.

    Irationality and bullying have taken the place of proactive policy making. Have we learned nothing these last 7 years?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  42. Chryssa

    I wouldn't call this "reversing positions" on the issue. It makes sense to allow for some drilling, as a Plan B if you will, in case our alternative sources don't work out. It's smart, it's fair, and it's this "across the aisle" cooperation we've been begging for.

    Boise, ID

    August 12, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  43. Joseph Mazzotti

    NO Jack, The old republican mindset of no regulation has gotten us in a bind again. Funny thing is with the whole no regulation is the very party that wants that gets squeezed like melons everytime! I guess when the speculators ran up the Housing market that bubble popped and now those same people have drove up the price of OIL and the Good old republicans march in step with chenney and the speculators! Good news Democrats are on the way!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  44. Andre R. Newcomb

    No. Afraid of walking? Why? Someone might recognize you? Too many things to do? . . . perhaps you ought to allow someone the luxury of the sharing instead of you being everywhere all the time.

    Andy. Sierra Vista, Arizona

    August 12, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  45. Bruce St Paul MN

    I don't think you can really call it offshore drilling. It is really just offshore leasing. For drilling to occur, there would have to be oil rigs, drills, and crews available in the foreseeable future, plus a desire by the oil companies to put them to use, followed by refineries being built. None of this is likely. So what's to gain? Why are the Republicans so bent on making this happen? Call it a farewell gift to the oil companies before the Republicans go out of business. The oil leases give oil companies additional long-term assets and possibly a boost in stock price. Period. No lower gas prices, no thumbing our noses at OPEC. That is just smoke. Democrats are for solutions. Republicans are for preventing solutions. Lift the ban, call their bluff. But lease don't elect any more of these charlatans.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:15 pm |
  46. Rick Medina,OH

    Jack,

    This question scares the 'tar' right out of me. Paris Hilton actually made sense in her video.

    RS

    August 12, 2008 at 3:15 pm |
  47. Jerry,OK

    Jack, There is no way we are going to drill our way out of this mess. It will take, conservation, alternative energy resorces, ban on oil futures trading, and more... Republicans are simply doing what they did after 9/11. Pandering to fears, and worrys, for political gain.

    Jerry N/Oklahoma

    August 12, 2008 at 3:16 pm |
  48. Grant from Lava Hot Springs, Idaho

    If the ban is not lifted now, it will be when we can't get it anywhere else. We know (or hope) the oil is there. We will need oil until we come up with something better. And we had better start soon-on the drilling and finding the long term solution to our energy fix!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  49. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    Drilling off-shore is not a particularly good idea. I remember the 1969 Santa Barbara,California oil platform blow-out because I was there and saw the horrific damage that it caused. We have lost so many of our fisheries to oil that areas that once had an abundance of sea life are now empty. If we keep doing what we are doing,our seafood will be extinct before the oil is. Then what will we do?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  50. Terri from Southwest VA

    The ban should not be lifted because it would not help our price situation. American-based companies are shipping record amounts of gasoline and diesel fuel to other countries. Diesel fuel shipments were 7 times greater in April 2008 compared to 2007. Gasoline shipments were the highest it has been since 1945, when shipping overseas during WWII to help other countries due to shortages. Would those oil companies continue to ship outside the U.S. in record numbers? Absolutely. The ban being lifted would probably help oil companies increase their profits but I suspect it would do little to help the average person.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  51. Linda in Florida

    They need to drill on the lands that were supposed to drilled and still have not been tapped.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  52. Captain Ned in Tampa, FL

    Absolutely Jack! Everyone knows that minor oil spills occur frequently during offshore drilling. The minor, nealy undetectable oil slicks that result from these spills coat your skin when swimming in the ocean. Recent studies have determined that this thin layer of crude on the human integument provides ultimate cutaneous protection against the dangerous UVB solar rays with an SPF factor ten times that of the more expensive sunblocks. Allow offshore drilling...Americans will save a ton of money on suntan lotion.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  53. Allen L Wenger

    No. We don't need knee jerk reactions to serious problems. Lifting the ban will do nothing in the short run and it is questionable how much good it will do in the long run. We would be smarter putting our efforts into developing wind and solar energy for the long run, while trying to become more efficient in our use of all energy sources.

    Allen
    Mountain Home, Idaho

    August 12, 2008 at 3:20 pm |
  54. David

    I favor offshore drilling, but do not trust Republicans who are so infatuated with oil, that they are not serious about any other energy source. Once they get offshore drilling approved they will all go play golf. Drilling will not produce oil for years, and when it does, it will be a fraction of what we need. Meanwhile, energy costs will go sky high. We will have no safety net. And, this gas price hike will look like a minor increase. Don't take it from me, listen to T.Boone Pickens, the oil billionaire explain our plight. Conservatives think in the past, that's why they bet on the horse and buggy, and now oil off Florida.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  55. Mike, Atlanta

    Jack,
    Politicians are politicians and compromise is always necessary to actually get things done. This means that positions will change as the negotiating progresses. I have heard that the oil companies already have access to drill on 66 MILLION non-protected acres (half of which are OFF-SHORE) and they haven't even begun to drill on any of it yet. So the lifting of the ban on protected areas is a gimmick. Why do the oil companies want it – because they hate restrictions on what they can do – ANY restrictions. Why do most people agree with the oil companies – because all they've heard is "Lift ban – lower gas prices – everyone happy".

    August 12, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  56. Ray, Florida

    I got no problem with drilling off my shore line here in Florida! As long as we Floridian's get a piece of the action. After all we're taking the risk say something should go wrong, such as a spill. Let's say $1,000.00 per person for a down payment on the lease, and a percentage of the profit's every quarter. There is no such thing as a free lunch! Right?!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  57. Mike - Hot Springs, Ar.

    Depends on whether or not you are a fish, fowl or human. I really do not think the fish and birds are very happy about lifting the ban.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  58. Cassandra

    No! Unfortunately as usual the Bush administration and MCLier are able to convince the people that drilling off shore will somehow help now. People who look closely understand that it has not impact for another 10 days. The problem is the media is not doing its job to education people. Only reporting stupid polls to help the REP say 80% of American want to drill off shore. How long will Americans continue to let themselves be lied to......I am tired of the 8 years of disgraceful Republican administraton. It will be the same failed policies if McCain is elected.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  59. Jason, Koloa, HI

    No, it is time to move away from oil. This country has had enough of short sighted, greed driven, non-solutions. The majority of people want to re-invent America as an alternative energy leader and create millions of jobs in the process. No more Gas and Oil Party puppets spouting the rhetoric of greed. America needs to lead the world in the green revolution and let the petroleum dinosaurs go extinct.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  60. Paulina in The Netherlands

    I find this oil thing very confusing. OK, so OPEC is driving up the price of oil, but how about Canada and Mexico? USA still imports most of its oil from Canada, right? And Mexico supplies about the same amount as Saudi Arabia. So OPEC is driving up the price, which means that all the other oil exporting nations can ask more, too? I always thought that if there are more suppliers of the same product, the price will go down. And now with Russia playing a major role in world oil production and export, how's that going to affect the price? Russian oil import has begun to surpass OPEC import in Europe.

    Hey, here's an idea. Since Russia has HUGE oil reserves. What if the USA plays nice to Putin and Medvedev, maybe you can get a discount? Stop meddling in their business would be very helpful for starters. Hmm, wonder why the McCain't/Bush are so adamant about defending Georgia...? Did anyone say anything about... oil? What was this Scheunemann guy lobbying for again?

    I'm sorry, what was your question, sir?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  61. Judy, Exeter, Ca

    No! There is plenty of land designated for drilling. This is just a political football. The republicans have finally found something they can use to help them stay in power, lies and misinformation. Same old, same old. So what if those idiots stayed in Washington, maybe it will make up for the amount of time and taxpayer money they have wasted.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  62. James, Prescott,Michigan

    For the amount of oil that it will produce it could potentially harm our coast like it did in Alaska and California some years back. The oil companies are not spending money for exploration or new drilling. For that matter, they are not spending money for more and better refineries in this country. The only thing that the oil companies are spending money on is buying back their own stock and speculating in the futures market in order to drive up oil prices. Maybe we should give them more tax dollars for their endeavors.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  63. Andrea, Maryland

    It makes me cringe when people stand firm on a principle. Always leave room for "CHANGE" if necessary. Never say never.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  64. Jim

    No. We need to have an overall game plan for America that includes energy sources other than oil and being able to prosper into the future without any foreign resources.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  65. Vinny Connecticut

    Of course the ban should be lifted. We need to produce more of our own oil, along with nuclear power, wind power, natural gas, coal etc This is a no brainer! Pelosi now sees that 70% of Americans want the ban lifted so now she's changed her mind. She should have done that before she shut off the cameras, the lights and sent her Dems packing for the summer. She is such a joke; I wish she'd lose her House race, but then again, she represents "the Socialist Republic of San Francisco" so I guess America is stuck with her!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  66. Stacy from Fairfax, VA

    We need comprehensive energy reform, which may or may not include offshore drilling. Oil and gas are non-renewable resources which means when they are gone, they are gone for good.

    One reason that some some politicians may be changing their minds on offshore oil drilling is that so far in 2008 alone, the Oil and Gas Industry gave over $18 Million to the campaigns for most members of Congress. McCain leads the way with just over $1 Million.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  67. lynn

    No, and the people in the so call polls don't have all of the information concerning drilling. They will say yes to anything if they think it will bring cheaper gas prices..Has anyone ask them about oil spills and has anyone on your network talked about the dangerous of nuclear power plants you throw out all of these talking points and they don't inform the people that is why we are in the situation in the country we are in now.

    A lot of it is being hidden but, the people who are living it know. Keep on lying to the people and then act surprise about joblessness,.homelessness, crime and other problems. This stuff has been going on all along but now I guess it is a problem because it is hitting the real people and their stock portfolio's.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  68. Julie in CA

    Yes, let's ruin our coastline and risk oil spills (you know they'll happen), for the chance to reduce oil prices by 9 cents in ten years.

    I'd rather see oil companies nationalized, Jack, so there could be some public control over this vital resource. But of course that will never happen.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  69. John, Fort Collins, CO

    The issue of offshore drilling has been and remains as just another election year political stunt with no benefit to the country. I am very disappointed that Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi went over to the dark side on this. It appears our country can no longer tolerate a politician who stands their ground and does what is best for current and future generations. This whole thing is just stupid.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:29 pm |
  70. Pietro from NYC

    It's worth taking a good look at in terms of national interest and national security. If we are going to allow offshore drilling then let's come up with a constructive set of guidelines so that the oil companies don't rape and plunder our natural resources. How about making each corporation place $25 billion in an environmental defense fund for each site that they want to explore? And $25 billion more in another fund to explore alternative sources of energy rather than tax their windfall profits. That's a $50 billion insurance policy to ensure they don't screw it up or take advantage of the American public.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:29 pm |
  71. Hope M.Madisonville, KY

    Nancy Pelosi is right. It is a hoax. And a pander by the Republicans.
    They know perfectly well that the oil companies have over
    67 million acres in leases that they can drill but they aren't.
    It's like my mama always said, "Use what you have before you ask
    for more." The oil companies are manipulating the market by
    refusing to drill what they have and refusing to build refineries so
    there would be a larger supply of gas. If they drill and refine, the price
    will go down and the oil companies won't make as much profit.
    Exxon-Mobile has over 40 billion in profits that they could use to build some new refineries.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  72. Mickie in Philadelphia, PA

    NO, NO and NO - it won't help except to line the pockets of the oil companies and their buds in government who vote for it. There are no processing plants to handle the new drilling and it will take years to build them, so why not spend the money on alternative energy instead - oh, nobody is paying them to do that (D'OH)!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  73. Don Wagontown, Pa

    If it will get the oil company's to drill somewhere we may have to do something. Right now they have 68 million acres 33 million off shore and they are not drilling anywhere new. There is no way they will drill anywhere new until they are forced. would you if you where making 12 billion a quarter in record profits??

    August 12, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  74. Marty, Idaho

    No, we shouldn't. It's like trying to stop a gushing wound with a band aid – not to mention the environmental effects. I think that there has to be a middle of the road solution to this problem somewhere. Maybe we are too busy arguing over senseless solutions proposed by pandering politicians to see it.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  75. d

    Absolutely Jack. Not to do so is shooting ourselves in the foot. We need to get away from paying our enemies over $700 billion for oil per year. Everything manufactured to date uses oil in some form or another. The World will never be truly "off oil" unless you want to live the "cave man" days. We also need to look at every option possible and economically feasible for alternatives. However, these won't be up and running, made to the American public for years and years. Let's stop the bickering and use every single source plus innovations that we have.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  76. Ralph, Corpus Christi

    We need to pursue alternatives. We've got offshore drilling going on now in the gulf of Mexico and just yesterday our Texas Senator Hutchison visited here and was quoted as saying:" I do think that when you look at Corpus Christi and the Gulf of Mexico, there have been no environmental problems," Jack, I guess she's forgotten about how prone we are to hurricanes down here – our dumb luck and oil is going to run out!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:36 pm |
  77. Maggie Muggins

    Let's see 69% of the people surveyed feel the Republican Party's rhetoric on drilling off shore is a good idea and want it done.

    A higher percent than this felt the Republican Party's rhetoric on invading Iraq was a good idea and condoned doing it.

    Oil was around $28.00 a barrel before invading Iraq and now it's way over a hundred dollars a barrel.

    I would have to say any time the American public is so highly in favour of doing something likely the best way to go is directly opposite.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  78. Ray from Nashville

    Yes, as long as it is part of a long term energy strategy that aims to remove us from the stranglehold that foreign oil has on us. More U. S. drilling, increased dependence on nuclear, solar and wind power and increased use of natural gas. Let's aim to keep our dollars here at home.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  79. Nuwan Sam

    If combined with a good initiative to explore other avenues and with proper regulations, I think it will help. Although we will not see those oil for another decade, it will send a clear message to wall street speculators who manupilate oil prices and that would bring down the price. That would be the immediate benifit.

    – Nuwan from Houston, TX

    August 12, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  80. Raymond Duke/Gatesville,Tx.

    I don't care how much the oil companies make in profits as long as gas is low cost and affordable to the consumer. I notice how much you liberals seem to hate anyone who is not on welfare or some other goverment handout. I don't hear none of you people saying lets boycott CHINA for all the bad products they deliver to this country. If I pated 1.25 for a gallon of Gas I don't care if they make 200 billion in profit for each year. I don't hate rich people just because I am living and working for a middle class wage.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  81. wally Ruehmann las Vegas nv

    why? so the oil companies can make more money, that oil won't stay in this country it would go onto the world market. if there's a spill they won"t do anything to make things right, just ask the people in Alaska, boy did they get screwed. the conservative supreme court did it to them the other day. don't risk what we have left , over oil.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  82. June in FL

    Only with conditions attached to drilling off shore in new locations. First one being after all present leased areas have been explored first. Meanwhile, tax payers money should be better spent on alternative energy. Not supplementing oil companies or WARS.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  83. Susan from Greenfield, Wi.

    No, it won't change a thing. It will take years to bring on line, and by that time we should be well on our way to hydrogen powered vehicles. Oil is a dinosaur that other dinosaur's just won't let go of. It is high past time for the out with the old, and in with the new. Russia would not be so tough if it were not for it's strangle hold on Europe with it's supply's of dinosaur soup.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  84. Praetorian, Ft. Myers, FL

    The fact that Pelosi is against it is reason enough for me to be for it!!

    Logically–as far out as the rigs are, most tourists and bathers wouldn't even see them. And in the remote case of a leak–we have great clean-up technology now.

    I say we go with the off-shore drilling to ensure all energy sources are outside of another nations control in the next 10 years–oil, gas, coal, solar, wind–we should own it...or be at the mercy of other nations–or speculators.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:43 pm |
  85. Paul, Columbia, SC

    Lift the bans on everything energy related immediately and keep the government out of it. The Energy Revolution advancements created by the free market will be spectacular. The moose, caribou, woodsy owl, and the snail darter will just have to cope.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:43 pm |
  86. garrick

    Hi Jack
    yes it should,why not kill off all fish ,like we have killed off places for wildlife to run free.we dont need clean beaches or water to drink.we can live off oil.a nice glass of oil with our steak.
    clearwater,fl

    August 12, 2008 at 3:44 pm |
  87. Captain Ned in Tampa, FL

    Absolutely Jack! Everyone knows that minor oil spills occur frequently during offshore drilling. The minor, nealy undetectable oil slicks that result from these spills coat your skin when swimming in the ocean. Recent studies have determined that this thin layer of crude on the human integument provides ultimate cutaneous protection against the dangerous UVB solar rays with an SPF factor ten times that of the more expensive sunblocks. Allow offshore drilling…Americans will save a ton of money on suntan lotion.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  88. Ian from Millis, MA

    Yes, the ban should absolutely be lifted. What are we waiting for until we don't produce any of our own oil to do something about it? These politicians in Washington are unbelievable. This is a national security and economic crisis waiting to happen. I have no problem with looking to the future and finding alternative sources of energy. But until that day we need a short term fix and drilling would be a much quicker fix than anything else offered. If they didn't have oil spillage during Hurricane Katrina then we have environmentally friendly ways to drill. Do it now before it's too late.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  89. Kim, Dodge City, Kansas

    Anyone who really believes that a so-called "oil shortage" is the cause for high prices, probably still believes in the Tooth Fairy. Lifting the ban on off-shore drilling is what these high prices have been all about from the beginning. We don't have the refining capacity to handle any oil that might be found, and since no one wants a refinery in their back yard, that oil would go on the world market to be sold to China and India. Do you really think that companies making hundreds of billions of dollars a year are going to let something as insignificant as a law get in their way?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  90. Jaime, Plantation FL

    The only principle should be the will of the people. If the people want drilling then let it be.

    Wait a second, "Don’t you love how they all stand firm on their principles?"

    Why should we demonize politicians for changing their minds based on the fact that WE changed our minds. 4 years ago I'm sure that most americans would have been opposed to drilling for more oil off the coast of Florida.

    So now that most Americans seem to want it, why not open it up. Also while we're at it, why not also take back all of the land leased to oil companies that isn't being drilled in. There's plenty more to do for energy than just opening up our shores to oil company profits. Why not do some of it? Oh wait – that would be changing your mind to suit new realities and challenges. We can't have leaders flip flopping like that!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  91. Joe in DE

    No it has not real short or long term benfit. In the intermedate period (10 to 20 year) , it might help a littel It's like putting a bandaid on a cancr.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  92. Kristen- Philadelphia, PA

    I thought Congress was on vacation, are they coming back to do this vote or what? Either way I say no oil drilling. The problem is not just our dependence on foreign oil but oil period. To me it’s a short cited plan that will still leave us with an energy problem in the long run. Why not think outside the box for once because seriously a kindergartner could have come up with this solution of drilling for more oil.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  93. John Naples FL

    Lift the ban we will need the oil 5 to 10 years from now even if we were able to replace oil with Biofuel tomrrow we will still need oil what do you think all them plastic bag's at Wal-Mart are made of ,not to mention the thousand's of other thing's made from oil wake up people

    August 12, 2008 at 3:48 pm |
  94. Brian, Buffalo, NY

    No point. The oil industry doesn't want to do offshore drilling, anyway. It's too expensive. They have options on many areas of land drilling and aren't bothered about that either. Why? Because making oil too easily available would make prices of gas and heating oil plummet and, besides, they're making obscene amounts of profit already. Not to mention the vast amount of income the government gets from existing oil revenue. And, what happens when the oil runs out?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  95. aaron in Carolina Beach NC

    Im gonna laugh 4 years from now when Americans realise they were fooled by the GOP yet again.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  96. Erica,TX

    Hi Jack,

    No, this is just a political stunt in an election year, and as Americans we should be offended that we are being used as pawns in a game of politics.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  97. Susan, Orlando, FL

    No. People and politicians don't seem to get it. There are plenty of areas the oil companys already own that they can drill in, and they are not! Living in Florida, I don't think residents and tourists who come here want to see oil rigs off the coasts, and the beautiful beaches full of oil globules like in Texas. The oil companies have the leases to drill off shore in areas that can't be seen from the coast, but haven't done so, yet they want more land so they can be right in our back yards!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  98. Alan - Buxton, Maine

    The way to get off our addiction to oil is not drilling for more. We need to get free from oil and the middle eastern countries who have us over their barrel. There are many other options and we should be pursuing them full force.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  99. Pugas-AZ

    On, off. Let's shore-up the drilling in general. While we are drilling we should also be digging. But lets wash are hands as we go.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  100. Mariel

    Take your next vacation to the Louisiana coastline and see if that question really needs to be asked. It's not just the off-shore drilling equipment that hurts the geography, it's the support structures, refining and storage installations, the heavy commercial traffic on both sea and land, and the god-awful smell. Not on my coast, Thank you very much!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  101. Bill in Michigan

    Don't look now, they are all bending in the political wind. The truth is lifting the ban on offshore drilling won't impact anything for several years, and even then won't curb the US dependance on foreign oil. A larger broader plan to take us away from oil into other energy sources is what really needs to be done, and some politicians are fianlly looking that direction.

    As for the opportunistic offshore drilling movement it is simply playing on the higher gas prices and fears of the american public to get its way right now. And so far, it seems to be working.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  102. Rosalynd Florida

    Just say No to offshore drilling. Its the environment stupid!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  103. Chuck, Eugene Oregon

    When you consider the actual gallon total available off shore which equates to less than a 6 year supply and the fact that it will take a minimum of 5 years to find it and 3-4 more years to drill and pump it. No it is not worth it. This country needs to step in line, and develope alternative energy sources, we must learn to live on less oil. What about propane or natural gas (korea runs on propane). What about cane fuel it is cheaper to produce than corn ethenol and better for the environment? We can do much better, but that will not happen as long as the big oil companies have the majority of our politicians in their pocket.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  104. David in Granville, Ohio

    Only if you subscribe to the view that the best cure for an addiction is getting an endless supply of the thing you are addicted to!

    August 12, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  105. Rob, San Diego

    What are the cons of offshore drilling? Opponents always cite "environmental concerns." But what are the concerns? They never talk about it, nor are these concerns ever reported in the media. We already drill offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. I've never heard anything in the media regarding any problems with those. So, whats the problem drilling offshore on the east coast or west coast?

    August 12, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  106. Doug from Bloomington IN

    Drilling will only be a bandaid on a future life-threating cataclysm. They pretty much just want to pull the existing dwindling supply of oil out of the ground faster so our children's small supply will become none.

    And sure, the politicians will change their minds if they think the public wants them to. But there aren't a lot of petroleum researchers or geologists among the general population. Thus, they don't know what they're talking about. They just want cheap gas. Who doesn't.

    To Obama's credit, he is at least trying to attach some forward-thinking conditions to any lift of drilling bans. McCain just wants to do it, full speed ahead. As for Pelosi and the rest....they're doing what they always do. She can go away, as can Harry Reid and the rest of the candy-assed congress.

    I'm a Democrat. I just want some new Democrats. Obama is a new Democrat.

    August 12, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  107. William Herman

    No, let the oil companys drill on the lease's they already have.

    Bill, Petaluma, CA

    August 12, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  108. anthony retired oil& hazardous chem. consultant ADL cambridge,ma

    There are 33 million acres of offshore sites and 38 million acres of land sites within the USA under leases and not being drilled for gas and oil. Big Oil could be drilling these sites today without any additional approvals.

    If Big Oil puts these sites currently under lease into production they could bring the price of oil down. This will also bring their profits down. Why would anyone in business sacrifice profits in a free market? Patriotism, love of country, moral obligation ?

    It is Big Oil's fault you're paying high prices and it will not change.
    They're in business to make money and that's the bottom line.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  109. Kyle Irvine, CA

    Yes, Yes, Yes,
    69% of the American people want the ban lifted. The other 30% are afraid we will kill a seal or two in the process (God forbid)

    August 12, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  110. me46

    America is rich in minerals and natural resources. There is no reason why the the U.S. should not be energy independent. It is in our best interest to do so and it is our responsibility as a nation to tap our own resources. Before we deplete the worlds oil supply and divert valuable resources from emerging countries, we should explore and tap every possible source of clean and renewable energy at home. In addition we should be drilling off shore and building nuclear power plants if thats what it takes. Both republicans and democrats want something out of the energy crisis so a compromise shouldn't be too hard to swallow.

    tom
    las vegas

    August 12, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  111. Valorie Jay

    Jack – Absolutely not. The Republican senator from my state of North Carolina wants to drill off our coast. This area is called the Graveyard of the Atlantic because of terrible storms, high seas and winds that take down everything in their path yet Senator Elizabeth Dole supports the drilling frenzie of George Bush and John McCane. Unbelievable!!!

    Valorie
    North Carolina

    August 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  112. Bodo, Ann Arbor

    One look at the map shows that the coastal shelf lies hundreds of miles out at sea on the US East coast, but runs close to shore in the West. Drilling should only be allowed in the East. In fact the Chinese have already started drilling there in what are technically Cuban waters.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  113. Tom, Avon, Maine,The Heart of Democracy

    No. That is a red herring that would have some of the public thinking there is something substantive being done. We've been done that road before with Cheney and Big Oil. We need more than gimmicks and placebos. We need an alternative to fossil fuel. WE need Obama and a new day.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  114. Christi Carlsbad, CA

    Only if the tax breaks for big oil are also lifted and tax breaks for wind energy companies added. McCain is against tax breaks for wind energy but for tax breaks for oil. Sheesh, is this dinosaur guy a complete moron or does he not care about the planet we leave for the next generations?

    August 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  115. Jerry from Jacksonville

    Hell no, not when there are millions of acres of offshore area that the oil companies have leases on and have not drilled one hole. This is all about big oil and some rich individuals that want to have control over all of our oil and gas reserves. It would be a damn shame to give all of this to the oil companies, especially when there is no way they can drill for at least 5 years. Why don't someone ask why they aren't drilling on the leases that they have? All you hear people say is lift the ban, lets find out why there is no drilling and in fact they are loosing leases for failure to drill

    August 12, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  116. Nick - Cary, North Carolina

    I have no reserviations in drilling offshore, or anywhere else. The main danger in offshore drilling is that people might actually think it would be doing something effectoive to solve the energy crisis, when in fact it would be as effective as trying to drain lake Erie with a tea spoon. More drilling is a feel good idea like the mythical 200 MPG car carburator, the eat all you want and grow slim diet, and the work from home part time and triple your income gambits, how could anyuone be against those feel good solutions?

    August 12, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  117. leevaughn brown

    NO!
    Cinti, Ohio

    August 12, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  118. Don in Grand Rapids, Mi

    YES!

    August 12, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  119. Dan, Chantilly VA

    What a surprise, Pelosi initially claims she's standing firm against Bush and then caves within a month. She has got to rank up there as one of the worst speakers ever. As for offshore drilling, it's nothing more than a distraction; the political equivalent of a get rich quick scheme. The American people won't benefit one bit from drilling in the ocean, and the oil companies will be laughing all the way to the bank. For all those claiming that the drop in oil prices has been because Bush dropped the ban, you need to look up the definition of "logical fallacy".

    August 12, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  120. ET

    There should have never been a ban to start with.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  121. James, Redmond, WA

    No. It wouldn't make a difference for Americans for another 10 to 20 years, and it would just continue our addiction to oil. It's time to work on fixing problems, not just providing band-aids.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  122. john lenehan

    Hi Jack, we live in Ireland for 4-6 months of the year and we're happy that the gas prices, here, have fallen from $9.00 per gallon to $7.30 per gallon. We need some more off-shore drilling, with caution, to increase our availability of oil. I emphasize, CAUTION.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  123. GARY

    Drilling will not solve the problem when we have only 3% of the oil reserves and we are using 26% of the worlds oil. Boone Pickens is right.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  124. Joe St Louis, MO

    Jack,

    Lets work towards banning foolish drivers of gas consuming bohemiths.

    Joe

    St Louis,MO

    August 12, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  125. Deb in Lancaster, PA

    Absolutely not. Lifting the ban will not produce oil for years, and we don't have years.
    Besides, let the oil companies drill in areas in which they already have drilling options. And ban the sale of our oil overseas...we need it here. Why should oil companies make money by selling it on the world market at the expense of the U.S. while we have to buy oil from overseas, thus creating an immense degree of "national INsecurity."
    Most of all, we all need change. We need to change the way we think about our cars, our energy future, our place in the world.
    We can't do this without engaging our brains. And yes, we can do that. Together.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  126. Mike Smith, New Orleans LA

    Over 75% of the drillable off shore space has not been explored. Let's drill there first before we give the Florida beaches to George and Jeb's oil friends.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  127. Allen in Hartwell GA

    Jack, no way would I support a blanket lifting on offshore drilling. All this would do is guarantee the oil companies many more years of record profits. When the oil companies prove that they can control their greed I might support giving them permission to drill in the banned areas, but only after they have drilled in all the areas they now are allowed to drill in, and only after much work is done to develope alternative sources for energy.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  128. Don (Ottawa)

    If your child's a drug addict, do you help out by subsize their habit or do you send them to rehab? Subsizing the habit only benefits the dealer, big oil.

    August 12, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  129. Neatha in Kansas City

    NO, and enough already. We would not see any oil from that for 10 to 20 years. And our oil hits the open market like any other oil, so there is no guarantee that it would even stay here in the US. Right now, a majority of the oil drilled in Alaska is sent to China. So we are drilling our own oil and shipping it overseas.
    This is not the fix, in 10 years we should have a better solution than oil. It is time to move forward, this horse is dead, quit beating it already.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  130. Nancy

    FromSomerset, Ky.

    Yes drilling should have started last year. The no nothing Congress as usually always have to add something to the package. Wake up Congress pass something without putting more on to the bill.

    Congress is worst than abunch gossping old ladies sitting in the last pew in church!!! All talk but no action!!!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  131. Mike P. L.A.

    No, we finally have a way to force ourselves out of the headlock of the middle east and others that don't really care much for us. Keep the ban, let's develop new and great technology so when their oil runs dry they are coming to us for the knowledge, then charge them like the heat in the Sahara!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  132. Steve (Atlanta)

    Don't lift the ban.

    The American people support it because they want cheaper gas. People rarely can see beyond their bank accounts. What's best for the future is to have high gas prices and move towards alternative energy. Cheaper gas doesn't accomplish that.

    We elect leaders to do what's best for society long term, not what makes the whining masses happy short term.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:02 pm |
  133. CJ in Roanoke, VA

    Of course it should be lifted. Every other oil producing country in the world is utilizing their proven oil reserves except the USA. We need to get with the program and drill, drill, drill !!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  134. Rob in Jacksonville, FL

    The land already leased doesn't all contain oil. Oil companies drill where the oil is. They don't just throw up a rig and hope for the best. End the ban now, instead of waiting even longer to do this simple fix.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  135. David

    No. what will it do for us now or in the next 5yrs? Nothing the gas prices will still be up there. We need to do what was suppose to happen back in the early 70's now 30yrs later we are back here again. Let get it right this time Barack.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:05 pm |
  136. Cris, Wisc

    Yes, it should be lifted.

    The priority should be to get off foreign oil then reduce overall consumption by moving to alternatives to include, clean coal, nat gas, wind, solar, and nuclear.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:07 pm |
  137. Uncle Whitey

    Absolutely yes!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:07 pm |
  138. Lenny, NY

    Why in God's name do we have to give oil companies more? Record profits, re-gained access to Iraqi pipelines, millions of acres offshore currently at their disposal and tax subsidies to boot...enough is enough...we need to get OFF of our oil addiction. Real, substantial investment in alternative energy sources and hybrid vehicles will drive the price of oil to record lows.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:08 pm |
  139. Larry D.

    Jack,

    We should not lift that ban on offshore drilling we are wasting our time and money if we do, We need to focus on what will make profit and thats cleaner renewable energies like wind power, algea oil, electric and hydrogen. we need to get off this addiction to oil and so does the rest of the world. There is plenty of things in this world to power things besides using oil I am sure of it, look at the guy who powered his farm using cow manure. We can do it we just need to be smart about it.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:08 pm |
  140. Parker

    Even if the ban on offshore drilling were lifted, it wouldn't help. I say that for three reasons. Number one: it would be at least a decade before we see any appreciable difference in gas prices. Number two: it won't help solve our real problem, which is our insatiable addiction to oil. Number three: no drilling will actually happen. The oil companies already have access to promising land to begin with. and if they aren't drilling in their own land, why would they drill anywhere. Not that they would want to. Why would they want do do something that some people say would make gas prices go down? They don't, they want to keep this gravy train rolling for as long as possible.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  141. michael from new jersey

    Yes Jack, it should be lifted just so all those people who it will help will see in three to ten years that they were wrong. Only hope they will be grwn up enough to admit it. And Senator McCain saying we can have more oil in ten months. I that was to really happen it`s only because it` already there. They just not telling us and we already know that.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  142. Eric from Connecticut

    There is no silver bullet for our energy crisis.

    Both our potential leaders are 'for' this or 'against' that. How about a policy of yes to all of it for the meantime while we work for energy independence.

    If one of our 'potential' leaders really cared about making America energy independent they would inspire and call us to arms to raise windmills, lay solar cells, and be innovative to meet that goal.

    All I want to do now is sit on my couch and eat oreos.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:10 pm |
  143. Sue, Evansville IN

    Yes, we should definitely do offshore drilling. I don't care if it does take several years for it to really effect any of our prices or supplies. At least we would be taking a step towards it. If we do nothing we will be in the same place as we are now in five years.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  144. Jeanne Gove

    Yes. Never should have been banned in the 1st place.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  145. Kyle, CA

    The oil companies have 30+ million acres of sea that they can already drill in. Quoting John McCain , the oil companies need to "drill here and drill now" before they send their Congressional goons to demand more drilling.

    Besides, drilling will only prolong our addiction to fossil fuels and screw the environment for a greater period of time.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  146. Jannis M. Glover Savannah, GA

    No, No, No, No-unless someone can guarantee that it will not cause any damages!! I live on the Atlantic coast and the last thing I want to see on the horizon from Tybee Island, Georgia beaches is an oil rig with the potential for accidents that endanger our waters, coastline and its wildlife.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  147. Cynthia

    If I heard her correctly it would only lower the price by two cents per gallon. That's not even worth it but if it will get them to do other things that will stop us from being dependent on oil then I guess its okay but the main thing is to start to do some of the things that will get rid of that dependency away.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  148. bridgette

    I think that this off shore drilling should be explained in detail more. Not with the grand-standing that's going on in Congress.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  149. Mike

    Follow the money. Pelosi and Big Wind. Pelosi invested in T. Boone Pickens company last year, of course she was for no drilling last week and now, after the republicans are kicking her butt, she is for drilling with equal investment in alternate sources...like Big Wind??

    August 12, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  150. JaneE

    No. The government estimates there is more than twice as much oil in land available now, not under moratorium. Why not drill there, especially on the lands already leased? Offshore is a political ploy by the Republicans. It will do nothing to help with today's prices and make sure we use up all our American oil even faster than now. If we could drill everywhere in America today, where would we drill thirty years from now when the production starts dropping off? Or will Iraq be the 51st state by then?

    August 12, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  151. michael from new jersey

    Yes Jack, just so all those people who think it will help in just three short years will see that it didn`t. Haven`t you people caught on yet? Since Katrina and even before, the oil companies have been raising and lowering just to see how much we will take. They pull back for awhile then start up again. Trust me, right before next summer you`ll see this again. Trust me.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  152. kay morris

    Hi Jack,
    What's the # of acres we have on this land for drilling...63-68 million?
    I live in the middle of this country so have no shores to watch oil rigs go up. But do believe both sides can come together on this issue and make it work for both....why doesn't Senator McCain acknowledge the acres available and he and Senator Obama talk about this land owned by the oil co.?
    kay in illinois

    August 12, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  153. Mark, Oklahoma City

    Yes, and ironically, it will be lifted as soon as Hell freezes over!

    Mark
    OKC

    August 12, 2008 at 5:17 pm |
  154. jack

    We have been drilling in the Gulf of Mexico for decades so why not open more space there and on the coast of Fla.

    Just keep out of the wildlife parks in Alaska, NO DRILLING there.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:17 pm |
  155. Karolyn

    Yes, the ban should be lifted and combined with intense search for alternative energy and conservation.

    Scottsdale, AZ

    August 12, 2008 at 5:17 pm |
  156. Laura San Angelo, Texas

    I think if John McCain believes this and felt this passionately back in 2001 when George Bush came into power we wouldn't be seeing $4 plus gas right now.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:19 pm |
  157. Dan H ILLinois

    No wonder,we are in the fix we are in. With so many gullible people thinking that giving the oil companies more places to drill will solve our problems. To bad they can 't vote for Bush a third time.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:19 pm |
  158. Gale Burns

    NO, NO, NO. Rather than doing something that will have little impact , let's do something serious – like looking to alternative sources of energy that free us from dependence on oil AND do not muck with the environment. China is buying up all the oil it can find, so unless we take serious steps to move away from relying on that commodity, we're in for some pretty cold winters in a few years.... offshore drilling or no.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:19 pm |
  159. arnold elgort

    Gas prices have decreased Yes but only for a short time . The increase run up to date is only a prelude of what lies ahead , the water was being tested by all who ran up the price of a barrel of oil. People will start driving the large autos again and then the real price increase will be upon us. Keep the higher gas prices like they have in other parts of the world so-as the American public will start to l being less waist- full on how they use the autos. Lets STOP the WAIST.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:20 pm |
  160. lynne from lattimore, nc

    I don't think there should be off shore drilling. Any oil that comes from that won't be viable until for about 7 to 10 years. How does that help us in the here and now? It doesn't. It is just fodder for the candidates to play up to in order to garner votes for those diehard folk who think all the oil in the world belongs to us and it doesn't.

    We sat back on our butts for 30 years letting the oil companies buy off and scare off inventions and inventors that could have made our lives easier. Now we're right back where we were in the 1970s. I guess we'll sit on collective butts another thirty years until the next oil crisis before we actually get it.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:21 pm |
  161. Michael Davenport from Maine

    Dear Jack,
    the ban should not be lifted. Our dependence on oil has been compared to an addiction, if that is true you cannot help an addict by giving them the very substance that they ar e addicted to. Develop alternative energy sources and maybe even stop driving so much. Perhaps spend time and money on improving public transportation and maybe ourr leaders can even tell us that we need to sacrafice our convienences for future generations.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:22 pm |
  162. Donna in ID

    They already know about what amounts and where oil is off shore. They have had it sizmograph for lots of yrs. They don't just go and start poking holes anymore. That is just to old passe They can even get readings from some satellites. I was told that back in the late 70's by a man that did seismographing.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:24 pm |
  163. Candace

    I don't think so cause all it would do is cause Americans to continue to be addicted to oil just not foreign oil, we won't even benefit from it for at least 7 or 8 years, and eventually that will run dry as well. We need to have alternative energy options so my grandkids or their kids won't have the same problem down the road. Besides why don't those greedy bastards drill in areas they already have available? Oh wait a minute I think I know why cause then they wouldn't be making record profits.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:26 pm |
  164. Stuart

    If we did, Al Gore would move to China.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:26 pm |
  165. Russ in PA

    Of course, open it up, and get the government off of everyone's backs. Politicians can't solve any problems, only create them...

    August 12, 2008 at 5:26 pm |
  166. Len, Colorado

    Let us remember that the Republicans in the Senate blocked an energy bill that would reinstate tax credits to Wind, Solar and renewable energy companies. They can give tax breaks to big oil but not to our future....Drilling will not solve our problem and it has been stated by our own Energy Department that we would not see any affect for 10 years and the cost would drop $1.44 per barrel.

    The Republicans also blocked a bill in the House of Representatives (two thirds needed) ordering tougher oversight of oil speculators.

    Hopefully, America will wake up and know this is a Republican agenda-all about the oil.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:26 pm |
  167. mello doug, New Mexico

    I don't even think that this question should be asked. It is only the ignorant and uneducated that support it. Big oil supports it. But why can't people get it through their heads that it will not effect gas prices for a least 10 years and then only by pennies. By then gas will cost $6 or $7 a gallon and probably more. We have got to think differently or we'll get the shaft and their will not be any lubricating oil on it.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:31 pm |
  168. David

    Jack: We Americans are such suckers! Now gas prices are down just a little bit we think we are back in the money ,plenty oil no need for alternative energy sources. How soon we forget. Those wise people will move ahead with other sources and use drilling off shore as a last resort. David – Virglnia

    August 12, 2008 at 5:33 pm |
  169. Rosemary, California

    No, the Ban should not be lifted. For a change I agree with Nancy Pelosi. What are the Oil Companies doing with the 68 million acres they already have. I hope the voters are not that stupid that they can't see through the farce. We need to produce more efficient ways for energy and it can be done. We still don't have the politicians willing to stand up and make a true stand on this issue. How many years has it been since the Gas Lines of the 70's?

    August 12, 2008 at 5:33 pm |
  170. Jerry--- Roselle, Illinois

    Who the heck is Boone Pickens?

    Oh yeah he was an original Swift Boater!

    So much for honesty!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:34 pm |
  171. Patrick in Hampstead , MD

    Jack – its gonna happen anyway. We have no Energy Policy. Lets lift the ban and start drillin away. And while we are at it, lets invade Iran, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela and take their oil and give proceeds back to the American people. Why should we care, they all hate us anyway.
    McCain will straighten them out, after all, he's just to the right of Ghengis Khan. He's the man.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:35 pm |
  172. Darr/Cleveland/Ohio

    No–why is it when America is faced with a crisis like rising gasoline prices they look for the quick fix. Offshore drilling is the quick fix in a way though to realize any actual gasoline from immediate off shore drilling would not come about for years and years then why bother. Off shore drilling is only an issue because McCain is making it an issue and everyone who has no long term vision is jumping on McCain's short sighted, do anything to get elected platform without sense enough to say stop, lets do more detailed investigation into the actual feasibility into off shore drilling.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:35 pm |
  173. Charlene

    It might be a good idea "if" we had somewhere to refine the stuff! If there was refinery capacity we could pull more out of the ground where we currently have drilling leases. If we can't refine, don't drill, it makes no sense. WE need someone with some "political guts" to OK refineries. No one wants refineries in their backyards. Too bad. The Supreme Court allows shopping centers to be built under eminent domain-why not take the land, build refineries, let people scream, and let other people get good jobs at the refineries. Or does that make too much sense for this country? My neighborhood is full of foreclosures, buy my property!

    August 12, 2008 at 5:36 pm |
  174. Michael Catalfamo

    I think they should cause what people arent getting that offshore drilling well help the oil crises

    August 12, 2008 at 5:40 pm |
  175. Kyriacos, Athens Greece

    The American people, or any people for that matter, want neither offshore drilling nor Mars exploration. They want cheap energy at the pump. It would be wonderful for the entire world if the US political leaders found a way to implement Paris Hilton's plan which was so eloquently expressed, with empasis on clean energy coupled with industry retooling and job creation. Now that would be leadership sufficient to earn those politicians the name "The Redeem (Political) Team"

    August 12, 2008 at 5:41 pm |
  176. DMAC in ID

    Yes it should. What part of our "National Security" do you thick heads out there not understand??? It will come from oil Independence and the only way to achieve any of that is to drill. You want the rest of the world keep pulling your strings and raping your wallets.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:41 pm |
  177. A.M. Deist

    Yes. We are destroying the planet anyway. Might as well make it go faster. Does anyone really believe that removing all the fossil fuels from the earths core is a net positive?

    August 12, 2008 at 5:47 pm |
  178. Nancy, Tennessee

    Every time someone mentions off-shore drilling I get a picture in my mind of a duck soaked with oil and a worker trying frantically to get it washed off. Our animal population needs us to be more responsible in our endeavor to save our spoiled butts. Everyone should start trying to save on fuel consumption. How about turning the air conditioner to to 78 degrees and leaving it in the summer and 69 degrees in the winter. How about trying to stay off the streets for a few days. If errands were combined and joy riding eliminated, we could lower our dependence on oil by a staggering amount. People complaining the loudest are the ones who sit and think of excuses to take the car for another spin down the road.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:47 pm |
  179. John L - Indiana

    NO MORE DRILLING!

    we already have alternatives out there.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:47 pm |
  180. Karen

    If Speaker Pelosi changes her mind from against to All for it then there
    is something amiss.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:47 pm |
  181. Nick from OK

    No, Offshore drilling sounds great but, we don't have the resources to give us independence. And what do we do when those all dry up? Then it will be our children's problem. How thoughtful of us.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:47 pm |
  182. Fran of Huntington, NY

    No, No, No. Why now, when they have so many acres they haven't bothered to drill on. And it only prolongs the inevitable, we need alternative heating and energy, we have to get off oil. Us greedy, spoiled Americans are going to have to learn to sacrifice.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:49 pm |
  183. Gage in NJ

    I am a democrat and I feel we should drill offshore. Why not? I also want my taxes spent on new energy resources as well. One should not be done without an agreement on the other. I feel most of America is finally waking up to what your generation has done to our Earth. Move out of the way Jack, here comes generation X, hopefully we can do better.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:49 pm |
  184. Craig from Cleveland

    Never!!! We should get NASA on the case. There is a vehicle on the moon, that I'm sure is a fuel free vehicle. Instead of studying rings on Saturn and determining whether life can be sustained on Mars, NASA needs to come down to Earth and help produce fuel free vehicles.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:51 pm |
  185. JOHN WILSON

    No Jack, this is an example of oxymoron politics. We use 25 percent of the worlds oil supply and produce 3 percent. If we drill in overdrive and double our production to 6 percent, well you do the math. Who's to say Opec won't lower production by whatever percentage they want to? I don't see where drilling will help any. We need to be waned off oil. All oil, the less we use the better and we don't need to jump from the pot into the frying pan, our energy needs to be renewable.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:51 pm |
  186. Roy

    Even if the ban is lifted purely for the effect it will have on crude futures, hell yes.

    When the president lifted the executive ban, it sent a shock through oil futures and popped the bubble, dropping prices by 20 percent.

    If the congressional ban is lifted, imagine the shockwave that would resound through OPEC then.

    Lift it, jesus. Thats your short term relief right there, idiots.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:51 pm |
  187. Curtis from California

    Yes, let's do all the emergency measures to fix this economy. You can cut all subsidies to oil industries and close the speculation loophole. Then start anti-competitive hearings on Wal-Mart, and figure out why so many small businesses have disappeared. Finally, lobbyist and Federal Reserve reform. So, that ignorant politicians won't try to artificially float our struggling economy by printing more money (the real reason gas prices are high)

    August 12, 2008 at 5:52 pm |
  188. Vegas

    That $1.44 is per gallon... not per barrel... and it would take five years to get... but would affect price futures upon passing.

    The idea of doing it dropped prices 20 per barrel...

    August 12, 2008 at 5:54 pm |
  189. Lee from FL

    drill drill drill....surge surge surge

    give me a break.
    we spend billions to fight the war on illegal drugs
    how about do the same about crude,its just as bad

    why cant we develop some alternatives so we can sell China,India and Russia that bad stuff they call crude.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:56 pm |
  190. Simon in Syracuse, NY

    Dear Jack, Where there's smoke, there's work. Where there's oil, there's smoke. Therefore, where there's oil, there's work. We rely on work to make the world go 'round. So eat (food requires fertilizer which requires oil), drink (anything you swill requires delivery trucks which requires diesel fuel which requires oil), and be merry (believe it or not, most merry activities require oil too). So drill, drill, drill, tomorrow we die.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:58 pm |
  191. Willie and Vicki in Las Vegas

    Eventhough we are Democrats, we support offshore drilling because we need to start tapping in to our own supply. Sooner or later this will bring the prices down. We are a country that is heavily dependant upon gas. it is affecting our schools, everything.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:58 pm |
  192. Lynnie, Columbia, Mo..

    I'm part of the 30%. Leave the planet alone. It's the only one we got. There's enough oil spills in the Mississippi River now.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:58 pm |
  193. Mac

    The more independent we are of foreign oil, the better. We get to move forward under our own terms, not some middle eastern countrys'. Sure, we can look for different forms of energy, we should continue that, but this will allow us another level of freedom while we identify real solutions that don't have consequences later (unlike hybrid batteries, ethanol, biodiesel, etc., which do have consequences).

    August 12, 2008 at 5:59 pm |
  194. Jennifer Collins

    Most Americans do not think things through. All they know is what the Republicans tell them. Oil is off-shore but the democrats are stopping us from getting it. If we got that oil we wouldn't need the oil from the middle east.

    DUH!!!!!!

    Do you people honestly think that all of a sudden there is going to be all this oil that we can use to fill our tanks. NO NO NO. Do any of you know what a refinery is. Do any of you know what capacity these refineries are currently running at.

    DO YOUR HOMEWORK. And the media could help by educating people instead of talking about John Edwards and his stupid affair.

    August 12, 2008 at 5:59 pm |
  195. Kevin

    Jack, this reminds me of an old game I have called "King Oil." The object of the game is simple, take control all of your of all of your opponents oil fields and money and you win. Even though off shore drilling is a band-aid to create an illusion of fixing our energy concern, big oil has "greased" Washington DC to the point where it may slide in to the Patomac.

    Kevin
    Warren, MI

    August 12, 2008 at 6:00 pm |
  196. Bill in Arizona

    Isn't our government suppose to be "for the people & by the people"

    Come Election Day, fire all of congress.

    The overwhelming majority of Americans want to pump oil from Alaska and off shore, but as usual congress does what it pleases.

    And the hell of it is . . . We allow it to happen, by allowing them to stay in office!

    August 12, 2008 at 6:02 pm |
  197. Joe, Boston

    Notice that just the conversation of removing the ban is now driving down the price… imagine if we actually begin the process of taking the oil out of the ground! Its economics 101, if there is a hint of increased supply the market will drive the price down. Just like a hint of political turmoil can drive the price up.

    It makes Obama and other democratic leaders seem extremely naive in saying that drilling will only have a small affect. We need leaders that understand simple economic concepts like supply and demand.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:06 pm |
  198. K Kurth

    Off shore drilling? Oh, great, more money for the oil companies. Is the Gulf of Mexico with its storms the best of all choices? Have they solved the poisonous gas issue that has plagued some shore lines? Have they figured out what percentage of oil we would not have to import, if it is not significant, we need to figure out some other alternative. As the American people are being asked to make a decision based on a lack of information.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:08 pm |
  199. Elisabeth, Bloomington, IN

    Is it possible to do offshore drilling safely, for the environment, during the ten years it would take to get it up and running? Idoubt it. The future cost benefitsto the price of gas is insulting to true alternatives to reduce Americas dependence on oil. I am disappointed in Pelosi and Obama for their knee jerk reaction to polls and their support of drilling now. Politics makes strange bedfellows.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:08 pm |
  200. Chris Percival

    Argh. This has turned into another wedge issue. I'd like to call the Rights bluff, I'd say open it up with lots of regulations (for safety purposes) and lets watch to see how oil prices are impacted.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:09 pm |
  201. Janet White

    Absolutely NOT!!!

    There is more than enough acreage already okayed for drilling that is unused. Even if we drilled it would only save about 2 cents a gallon in 5 to 7 years. The sooner we get off the oil teat the better. Maybe then we can stop slaughtering people to get our hands on more of it.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:10 pm |
  202. Hal

    Yes. Drill offshore. Drill in ANWAR, too.

    August 12, 2008 at 6:10 pm |
  203. Dave C. Monterey, CA

    Yes, the ban on offshore drilling should've been lifted many years ago.
    Dave C.
    Monterey, CA

    August 12, 2008 at 6:10 pm |