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Offshore Drilling Debate Isn’t Over

There's Still Work to Be Done Once Congress Returns From Vacation

With the House Republican floor protest entering its 14th day and the offshore drilling moratorium set to expire in just over a month, some on the left seem resigned to the fact that Democrats have lost the debate over offshore drilling and more energy production. Others have resorted to irrational arguments that higher gas prices actually signal a policy victory by the left.

Asked to respond to this argument, Brendan Daly, a spokesman for Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, “The Speaker is very concerned about the impact that $4 a gallon for gas is having on families all across America and doing everything she can to lower gas prices.”

That couldn’t be further from the truth. Let’s take a look at Pelosi’s record:a86b36257d9f503a50caab81a016b90b

The left wants you to think this debate is over. Liberals want to pretend that conservatives have triumphed. But the reality is that this fight — from a legislative perspective — hasn’t even begun. What Republicans are doing on the House floor is unprecedented and inspiring. But when Democrats return from their five-week paid vacation next month, they’ll be the ones drafting the legislation, most likely without committee hearings or amendments.

That’s why Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Reps. Jeb Hensarlign (R-Tex.) and John Shadegg (R-Ariz.) are putting pressure on their GOP colleagues to sign a letter promising to oppose an extension of the offshore drilling moratorium. I’ve updated the lists below of the 10 Senate Republicans and 49 House Republicans who have not yet signed.

Without a promise from these Republicans, conservatives fear the GOP might not have the votes to fight back either a bad compromise like the Gang of 10 plan or a half-hearted attempt by Democrats to allow more drilling.

Senate Republicans Who Haven’t Signed the Letter

Susan Collins (Maine)
Bob Corker (Tenn.)
Elizabeth Dole (N.C.)
Chuck Hagel (Neb.)
Jon Kyl (Ariz.)
John McCain (Ariz.)
Gordon Smith (Ore.)
Olympia Snowe (Maine)
Arlen Specter (Pa.)
John Thune (S.D.)

House Republicans Who Haven’t Signed the Letter

Judy Biggert (Ill.)
Brian Bilbray (Calif.)
Gus Bilirakis (Fla.)
Mary Bono Mack (Calif.)
Vern Buchanan (Fla.)
Ken Calvert (Calif.)
Mike Castle (Del.)
Thomas Davis (Va.)
Nathan Deal (Ga.)
Lincoln Diaz-Balart (Fla.)
Mario Diaz-Balart (Fla.)
David Dreier (Calif.)
Terry Everett (Ala.)
Michael Ferguson (N.J.)
Jeff Fortenberry (Neb.)
Rodney Frelinghuysen (N.J.)
Elton Gallegly (Calif.)
Wayne Gilchrest (Md.)
David Hobson (Ohio)
Timothy Johnson (Ill.)
Walter Jones (N.C.)
Ric Keller (Fla.)
Mark Kirk (Ill.)
Joseph Knollenberg (Mich.)
Jerry Lewis (Calif.)
Ron Lewis (Ky.)
Frank LoBiondo (N.J.)
Connie Mack (Fla.)
Kevin McCarthy (Calif.)
John McHugh (N.Y.)
Howard McKeon (Calif.)
Candice Miller (Mich.)
Timothy Murphy (Pa.)
John Peterson (Pa.)
Jon Porter (Nev.)
Deborah Pryce (Ohio)
Jim Ramstad (Minn.)
Ralph Regula (Ohio)
Dave Reichert (Wash.)
Rick Renzi (Ariz.)
Dana Rohrabacher (Calif.)
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Fla.)
Ed Royce (Calif.)
Jim Saxton (N.J.)
Christopher Shays (Conn.)
Christopher Smith (N.J.)
Cliff Stearns (Fla.)
Fred Upton (Mich.)
Bill Young (Fla.)

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