WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Republicans are calling on the president to get the U.S. back to being an energy-independent country.
“Mr. President, it’s time to unleash American energy independence,” Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) said.
Stefanik believes the conflict in Ukraine and rising gas prices demonstrate the need for U.S. energy independence.
“People are paying over a dollar more on a gallon today than they were just one year ago, making it the highest since Joe Biden was last in the White House,” Stefanik said.
According to the U.S Energy Information Administration, the U.S. imported nearly 200,000,000 barrels of oil from Russia in 2020.
Lawmakers like Rep. John Joyce (R-Penn.) and Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), urge the president to move the U.S. and our European allies away from Russian energy.
“We can supply energy resources, which we have, under the feet of my constituents,” Joyce said.
“We have to be energy independent. We cannot be like Europe and be dependent upon Putin for natural gas,” Malliotakis said.
But Democrats warn Republicans are playing politics and don’t understand the real issues.
“Every single person who says that Keystone is the solution to Russian oil doesn’t know a damn thing about energy markets,” Rep. Sean Casten (D-Ill.) said.
Casten says the reason prices have gone up is that the U.S. is already shipping out gas overseas and reducing the amount in the U.S. market.
“We should absolutely reduce the global demand for Russian oil and gas, period full stop. The swing producer in the world is not the untied states, the swing producer is Saudi Arabia,” Casten said.
So far, Biden has not announced any sanctions on natural gas from Russia.