Part 1 argued argued that the Democrats would be smart to compromise on offshore drilling. Part 2 began an analysis of the bipartisan compromise proposed by the Gang-of-10 Senators, suggesting that deal isn’t so bad.
I am interrupting this series to point out that the House GOP is so nervous that the Dems might kill their pathetic political ploy by forcing a vote on a reasonable compromise that they are willing to delay indefinitely any deal that includes drilling, as CQ Politics just reported:
House Republicans said Monday they would refuse to consider any energy bill that came straight to the floor from the Democratic leadership’s offices, rather than working its way through committee markups — a process that can take weeks or months.
We just want it to run through regular order,” said Peter Hoekstra , R-Mich., at one of the daily news conferences the GOP has been holding since the start of the August recess.
Anything negotiated behind closed doors and brought directly to the chamber floor will be out of the question, Hoekstra said.
Republicans want the House to vote on legislation that would end a decades-long ban on energy drilling on the east and west coasts. Pelosi has rejected that idea, but recently signaled that she might move legislation to open up smaller areas to drilling.
Republicans said they should have the chance to amend such a bill during the markup process. Debating a measure in the Energy and Commerce Committee could be lengthy, forcing the chamber to stay in session in the weeks leading up to the elections. Republicans said they would be willing to stay as long as necessary.
An energy package that would expand offshore drilling will come to the House floor in September, but it will be bundled with provisions that Republicans oppose, aides to Pelosi confirmed.
Republicans said she is finally feeling pressure from constituents tired of higher gas prices and from members of her own party vulnerable in this year’s election.
But Democratic aides say the package being discussed by staff likely only would open up a handful of southeastern coastal states — Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina and Virginia — to drilling.
That, of course, is what the Gang-of-10 proposed. If the House GOP follow through on their threat to unanimously oppose any deal, I think that would reveal once and for all to the public who really believes in an “All of the Above” solution, and who mindlessly supports the one strategy that can’t possibly affect oil prices in our lifetime (see “EIA says offshore drilling will have “insignificant”).impact on prices. Saudis just proved EIA’s point“).
Does any group on the face of the planet act more cynically than the House GOP?