Last week, Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, proposed an amendment to the CLEAR Act to require an end to the President's moratorium on deepwater offshore drilling. Twenty-two of the committee's congressmen, including the committee chairman and two other Democrats, voted in favor of Rep. Cassidy's amendment. Twenty-one congressmen, all Dems, voted no.
But the recorded vote was 22 Yea, 26 Nea. The moratorium stands.
How did 21 Nea votes get tallied as 26? Easy. The committee's membership contains no less than five "non-voting delegates", all of them Democrats. So, effectively, the deepwater drilling moratorium that will devastate the States of Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi and Alabama was kept in place by delegates from Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands and the Northern Marianas Islands.
So over 10% of the votes on this key committee go to extra-Constitutional delegates from territories whose residents aren't U.S. citizens, can't vote for President, and pay no Federal tax.
Credit for this story goes to the editor of TheHayride.com and RedState commenter macaoidh:
And Connie Hair wrote about it at Human Events [emphasis added]:
Cassidy told HUMAN EVENTS in an interview post-vote that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has stacked the committee with votes against domestic energy development on the whole.
“There is an ideological bias in this Congress starting at the top against domestic energy production unless it is the ephemeral promise of windmills and solar panels,” Cassidy said. “If it were not for the representatives of the territories, she would have stacked it with someone else. There are only three Democrats on that committee who represent areas that produce energy: the Chairman [Nick Rahall (W.V.)], Jim Costa (Calif.) and Dan Boren (Okla.). Those are the three that voted for my amendment to end the moratorium.”
Cassidy said there's a great sense of relief that no new oil is currently leaking into the Gulf but there's a sense of impending doom in Louisiana over the drilling moratorium.
“There’s just a sense here that Obama hates Louisiana,” Cassidy said. “This moratorium is not hurting Tony Heyward or BP. They’re just going to move their rigs to Libya and start drilling there. The people it is hurting are families. Imagine the typical middle class family if you interrupt their income for six months what that would do to their finances. This is a people moratorium.”
I agree with all that, save for the 'six months' part. When those big rigs leave the Gulf of Mexico, they're headed for Brazil or wherever, and they're not coming back.
On Wednesday, July 21, the Cajundome in Lafayette, LA will be the site of the Rally for Economic Survival. Governor Bobby Jindal will be among the expected speakers. The event will be webcast, 11 am til 1 pm CDT.
Cross-posted at VladEnBlog.