Discoverer Deep Seas drillship off the coast of Louisiana drills for oil in the Gulf of Mexico for Chevron.(PHOTO CREDIT: AP PHOTO)
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
President Bush says Congress is the only thing standing between Americans and offshore drilling.
With gas averaging more than $4 a gallon, the president lifted an executive order yesterday that bans offshore drilling. But it was pretty much an empty gesture – not unlike a good deal of the rest of the Bush administration.
Offshore drilling has been against the law since 1981, and Congress would need to repeal that law before any drilling can take place. The president says Democrats should match his action to show that "they finally heard the frustrations of the American people."
Republicans in Congress are joining President Bush in laying the blame at the feet of the Democrats. Seven years without a coherent energy policy, and suddenly $4 gas is the Democrats' fault. Can you tell it's an election year?
The Democrats are pushing back. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says expanding offshore drilling would do little to lower gas prices in the near future. She says President Bush should release oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, a move he has resisted.
And it's not just Democrats who are against offshore drilling. California's Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger says it's not the answer, and instead we should work toward alternative energy sources.
The whole debate is pretty silly when you think about it. The oil companies currently have 68 million acres under offshore lease that are not being developed. Also, the U.S. has a shortage of refinery capacity, so even if we started drilling for more oil, there would be an issue of where to refine it.
Here’s my question to you: Should Congress go along with President Bush's call to lift the ban on offshore drilling?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Allen in Hartwell, Ga. writes:
All this will do is feed the pig. After offshore drilling, the oil companies will be after unregulated mining of the shale oil fields. We need to go on a low-oil diet. If we Americans didn’t waste so much fuel, we wouldn’t be in this poor shape and could tell the oil companies where to put all the oil we wouldn’t need.
If Bush, McCain and the majority of Republicans are in favor of this, it can't be a good idea.
Tom from Las Vegas writes:
I don't oppose offshore drilling, or even expanding drilling in Alaska. But I do believe the issue has no bearing on energy prices right now or even in the near future… The real problem isn't with the availability of areas in which to drill, it's with the inability to motivate oil companies to spend additional money to drill. Why spend money to develop new sources of oil when the current system is raking in record profits?
Of course we should be drilling for new oil. Why is this such a big issue? Even if there were another solution to “America's energy crisis" today, it could take a decade or more to make the transition. Drilling now will, of course, not have any immediate effect on prices at the pump. But there is a more important issue at hand: America's dependence on foreign oil. We should be doing anything we can to at least try to become "energy independent."
Shirley from Ohio writes:
Only if there is going to be relief at the gas pumps the day after they start drilling.
No. I have put a windmill on the top of my car and it only takes 4 hours for me to get to work, about 2 miles away. The other day I stuffed a bushel of corn into my gas tank and that worked just fine, too. Tomorrow I plan to look into other alternative fuels and will let you know how I do. Let the oil stay in the ground, and let the environmental lobbyists keep paying off those in Congress. They need more money to pay for their planes and limos.