Issa: Obama administration deliberately driving up fuel costs

posted at 3:25 pm on May 24, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

If President Obama is suffering politically from the backlash created by higher energy prices, a new report from the House Oversight Committee says he only has himself to blame.  Late yesterday, Oversight chair Rep. Darrell Issa issued a blistering broadside on the policies of the White House, accusing them of deliberately pursuing plans to make energy more expensive, accusing Obama of manipulating costs to favor his own energy choices:

Among other things, the report — “Rising Energy Costs: An Intentional Result of Government Action” — accused the administration of restricting access to domestic energy sources, hindering “fracking” technology and hampering the economic recovery by proposing new taxes on the energy industry.

The report also says the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) coordinated with environmental groups to target energy producers with environmental concerns. According to the report, the Oversight Committee obtained an email between the EPA Texas regional director and an environmental advocate congratulating each other on progress in creating barriers to energy production from fossil fuels sources.

The report covers some familiar ground, such as the quote from Obama in January 2008 that his energy policies would make electricity prices “skyrocket” as coal producers got penalized.  It also includes more recent actions by the administration, too:

In his FY2012 budget proposal, Obama did indeed request that the tax breaks for the oil production industry be repealed, totaling $60 billion over 10 years. The director of the Office of Management and Budget, Jack Lew, defended the repeals by  tying them to the goal of producing more electric cars.

“In part, we pay for this by eliminating 12 tax breaks hat now go to oil, gas and coal companies,” said Lew.

“The most troubling things about outlandish statements made by key Obama administration officials about the need to raise energy costs is that when we examined the evidence, they appear to reflect the agenda they are pursuing,” said Issa in a statement. “These are obviously not the policies Americans want or support.”

The executive summary alone is worth the read.  It outlines eight findings, one of which is that Obama’s EPA has “collaborated” with environmental activists to curtail potential American energy production.  That point includes a revealing quote from an e-mail:

6. EPA has collaborated with environmental groups to target independent energy producers for environmental concerns not related to their operations.

In an email message reviewed by the Committee, environmental advocates and EPA’s Texas-based regional director exchanged celebratory accolades for efforts that create barriers to energy production. One exchange concluded: “Yee haw! Hats off to the new Sheriff and his deputies!”

Issa’s team also put alternative energy potential into some perspective, especially on ethanol:

Ethanol, for example, also requires large amounts of corn to deliver fuel. “[T]he entire U.S. corn crop would supply only 3.7 percent of our auto and truck transport needs while using 300 million acres of U.S. cropland.”

During the campaign, Obama once said that he didn’t have a problem with high gas prices, but that the 2008 spike just happened too fast.  It appears that he’s been at least encouraging another price spike to bring us back to the peak in 2008.

Update: The House Energy Action Team has a new video out today making the argument for change in America’s energy policy:


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Thanks, 52%ers.

Vera on May 24, 2011 at 3:27 PM

Directly drives them up with drilling embargos and covertly drives up fuel prices by EPA regs, drilling red tape and general interference plus the crash of the dollar.

seven on May 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

That upcoming double-dip recession caused by gas prices going above $4 / gallon this Summer will likely be a real killer for Obama’s 2012 chances.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

What’s the big deal – he promised energy prices would “skyrocket” under him.

PROMISE KEPT!

RedNewEnglander on May 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

Talk is cheap Darryl, prove it then do something about it.

darwin-t on May 24, 2011 at 3:29 PM

This is a required post in any discussion on Obama and energy policy.

Kataklysmic on May 24, 2011 at 3:31 PM

Is Issa ever going to do anything short of barking like a little chihuahua? He talked a big game…subpoenas, hearings, etc on the corruption in this administration. What has he delivered, other than the Obama-esque “strongly worded letter”? Or have I missed something?

search4truth on May 24, 2011 at 3:33 PM

Obama and his entire administration are criminal.

darwin on May 24, 2011 at 3:33 PM

Shock at the guy for doing what he said he was going to do.

Nary a peep on the WPA.

?????

catmman on May 24, 2011 at 3:34 PM

So they can bring them down, just in time for 2012, Nov.?

Schadenfreude on May 24, 2011 at 3:34 PM

It appears that he’s been at least encouraging another price spike to bring us back to the peak in 2008.

does that bring the previous post into more clarity???

ted c on May 24, 2011 at 3:35 PM

“Prices will necessarily skyrocket.”

I hope there aren’t any people who are surprised. Agreeing with Obama – as both my parents do – is one thing. Being completely surprised he would say (and mean) something like that is simply impossible to believe.

Troika37 on May 24, 2011 at 3:36 PM

If China were deliberately and overtly preventing us from drilling in the gulf by putting gunboats in our way, what would we call that?

fossten on May 24, 2011 at 3:37 PM

That upcoming double-dip recession caused by gas prices going above $4 / gallon this Summer will likely be a real killer for Obama’s 2012 chances.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

I don’t know. I do think if things remain as they are, he’ll lose in 2012, but in a squeaker. What concerns me is that too many folks are adjusting to our current economic state as the new normal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 3:38 PM

BREAKING:

Sirens sound at WH; Rapid Response Team activated; Negative Story About Obama Found

BobMbx on May 24, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Look, it’s for our own good. We just don’t understand the intricacies of Obamas thinking. It will all be made clear in his second term.

Tommy_G on May 24, 2011 at 3:39 PM

If China were deliberately and overtly preventing us from drilling in the gulf by putting gunboats in our way, what would we call that?

fossten on May 24, 2011 at 3:37 PM

Obama would thank them for their assistance and tell them they can drill for our oil.

darwin on May 24, 2011 at 3:40 PM

I’m going to enjoy watching Obama defend this during the next election.

booter on May 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

I don’t know. I do think if things remain as they are, he’ll lose in 2012, but in a squeaker. What concerns me is that too many folks are adjusting to our current economic state as the new normal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 3:38 PM

That may change when that 99+ weeks of unemployment runs out.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

Lefties really think that they can switch us all to “clean” energy by forcing the price of fossil fuels to a comparable level.

Problem is, it’s not just the cost. The Toyota Prius will far outsell the Nissan Leaf because the Prius does pretty much everything a fully gas-powered car does, but at a greater fuel efficiency. I can drive to Houston or Dallas in a Prius after driving around all day for my job. Just like I do with my own car. I can’t do that with a Leaf. The Leaf is less functional at any price.

Sekhmet on May 24, 2011 at 3:42 PM

“Hats off to the new Sheriff!”

References to Obama and ‘new Sheriff’ bring up awkward ‘Blazing Saddles’ connotations… just saying…

Funny movie, but in today’s political environment…

Midas on May 24, 2011 at 3:43 PM

During the campaign, Obama once said that he didn’t have a problem with high gas prices, but that the 2008 spike just happened too fast. It appears that he’s been at least encouraging another price spike to bring us back to the peak in 2008.

Party like it’s 1999 2008!
-Barack O’bama

red winger on May 24, 2011 at 3:44 PM

That may change when that 99+ weeks of unemployment runs out.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

You don’t think that’ll be extended yet again? You really believe the GOP will block that heading into an election year?

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

I am sure this will be leading the nightly newscasts.

faraway on May 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

I’m going to enjoy watching Obama defend this during the next election.

booter on May 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

Defend it from whom? You think the msm will be in there swinging? not a chance.

WitchDoctor on May 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

Every candidate needs to hammer this home from now until election day.

Obama is intentionally raising the price of energy and forcibly denying us the use of our own resources.

darwin on May 24, 2011 at 3:46 PM

This guy is easily dismissed so it doesn’t matter what he says. He is a partisan attack do with a history of vitr…

you get the picture.

tomas on May 24, 2011 at 3:48 PM

Just a little off topic, energy is not the only industry bombarded by excessive regulations, a bulletin at the local lunber yard cautioned contractors there were 187 Pages of new codes added to the MI. residential building codes in 2009.

fourdeucer on May 24, 2011 at 3:49 PM

So this is the first promise he actually decided to keep? Wonderful.

UnderstandingisPower on May 24, 2011 at 3:49 PM

Gas prices just dropped drastically here, almost 50 cents a gallon. My father mentioned that by sheer coincidence, Congress had recently threatened the oil execs with the loss of some kind of subsidies…thoughts?

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Gas prices just dropped drastically here, almost 50 cents a gallon. My father mentioned that by sheer coincidence, Congress had recently threatened the oil execs with the loss of some kind of subsidies…thoughts?

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 3:50 PM

It trailed a big drop in oil futures prices by about a week or two.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:52 PM

If China were deliberately and overtly preventing us from drilling in the gulf by putting gunboats in our way, what would we call that?

fossten on May 24, 2011 at 3:37 PM

Ooh! Ooh! Pick me! Pick me!

A kinetic military action.

What did I win?

Mary in LA on May 24, 2011 at 3:52 PM

Gas prices just dropped drastically here, almost 50 cents a gallon. My father mentioned that by sheer coincidence, Congress had recently threatened the oil execs with the loss of some kind of subsidies…thoughts?

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 3:50 PM

So now stock holders, including many pension plans, take a hit?

darwin on May 24, 2011 at 3:53 PM

And just how does ‘the best administration, evah!’ propose to generate electricity for all those cars that won’t be burning gasoline?

GarandFan on May 24, 2011 at 3:55 PM

What else can you call this except criminal?

darwin on May 24, 2011 at 3:56 PM

What’s the big deal – he promised energy prices would “skyrocket” under him. PROMISE KEPT!

RedNewEnglander on May 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

Yup. Anyone who doesn’t understand why gasoline has more than doubled is either an idiot or is willfully ignorant.

Jaibones on May 24, 2011 at 3:57 PM

I am sure this will be leading the nightly newscasts.

faraway on May 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

If it does, it will be because of Bush’s oil deals and his close relationship with the oil companies…in other words, Bush’s fault again…

right2bright on May 24, 2011 at 3:57 PM

bbut I thought it was them speculators????

ted c on May 24, 2011 at 3:57 PM

I have nothing of substance to add here except that as a Texan I’ve never seen anyone actually write “Yeehaw!” in emails aside from party politicals.

dieudonne on May 24, 2011 at 4:02 PM

OT- Can anyone splain to me the purpose of the Odumbo tour of Europe other than the “See I’m a nice guy you should have invited to the wedding tour.”

rjoco1 on May 24, 2011 at 4:03 PM

In about 7 months when incandescent bulbs will no longer be available gas will go down to $1.50 a gallon. Yeah, that will happen.

fourdeucer on May 24, 2011 at 4:04 PM

Let your liberal friends know this. For some reason (for me at least) paying the higher price at the pump feels worse than higher taxes or a devalued dollar. Make sure when they get mad at the pump they think of the @sshole who is making them pay so much. They are led by emotions anyway, let’s capitalize on this one.

miConsevative on May 24, 2011 at 4:06 PM

I like it the way the words flip around and stuff.

shick on May 24, 2011 at 4:08 PM

It’s about time – I’ve been waiting for Issa to start doing his job.

Rod on May 24, 2011 at 4:08 PM

Gas prices just dropped drastically here, almost 50 cents a gallon. My father mentioned that by sheer coincidence, Congress had recently threatened the oil execs with the loss of some kind of subsidies…thoughts?

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Ours have only dropped around 15-20 cents. I’m not too keen on gas prices “stabilizing” at $3.75/gal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:09 PM

“Obama was America to fail.”

Shut up tiny voice! I will not believe in conspiracy theories.

Pass the Kool-Aid please.

shick on May 24, 2011 at 4:10 PM

(Try again.)
“Obama wants America to fail.”
Shut up tiny voice! I will not believe in conspiracy theories.

Pass the Kool-Aid please.

shick on May 24, 2011 at 4:11 PM

Sadly, Issa has no teeth and a pussy. When is he going to get on top of Gunwalker ?

Sandybourne on May 24, 2011 at 4:13 PM

Amazing.

I wonder if the news will get to the people who don’t pay that close of attention.

Isn’t this one a high crime? He took money out of my pocket, and gave it to who? The oil companies? Speculators? Who benefits?

petunia on May 24, 2011 at 4:18 PM

Yawn…. just more posturing a la the Democrats wailing about some Republican cabal to enrich oil companies when prices spiked during the Bush Admin.

lexhamfox on May 24, 2011 at 4:21 PM

What part of “necessarily skyrocket” do the American people not understand?

Dr. ZhivBlago on May 24, 2011 at 4:25 PM

I don’t know. I do think if things remain as they are, he’ll lose in 2012, but in a squeaker. What concerns me is that too many folks are adjusting to our current economic state as the new normal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 3:38 PM

Exactly. The economy is alive, but barely. Bumping along the bottom.

Ward Cleaver on May 24, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Ours have only dropped around 15-20 cents. I’m not too keen on gas prices “stabilizing” at $3.75/gal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:09 PM

Every time they spike, they’ll fall back down to a new floor. By design.

Like the frog in the pot of water that’s slowly warming to a boil.

Ward Cleaver on May 24, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Ours have only dropped around 15-20 cents. I’m not too keen on gas prices “stabilizing” at $3.75/gal.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:09 PM

Me neither. Praying it stabilizes at $3.50, tops!

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 4:28 PM

Every time they spike, they’ll fall back down to a new floor. By design.

Like the frog in the pot of water that’s slowly warming to a boil.

Ward Cleaver on May 24, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Yeah, like I said earlier. The new normal. But at some point(and we’re fast approaching it), this new normal becomes unaffordable for the peon masses like myself.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:29 PM

Then O’Booba owes me money.

Akzed on May 24, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Gas prices just dropped drastically here, almost 50 cents a gallon. My father mentioned that by sheer coincidence, Congress had recently threatened the oil execs with the loss of some kind of subsidies…thoughts?

Uncle Sams Nephew on May 24, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Dropped that much today? Here it’s down about 20 cents from the high a few weeks ago – should be *way* lower based on oil price…

Midas on May 24, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Remember the LameStreamers complaining that Bush was magically causing oil and gas prices to rise and fall as needed to enhance his election chances?

Akzed on May 24, 2011 at 4:32 PM

I am sure this will be leading the nightly newscasts.

faraway on May 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

The only places you will see this is here or some republican congress members website.My question, is the entire MSM exempt from these high prices?Do they get free health care and discounts on food and clothing for being lapdogs to this administation?Is their pay so good that it doesn’t affect them?

docflash on May 24, 2011 at 4:33 PM

That may change when that 99+ weeks of unemployment runs out.

teke184 on May 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

My nephew who graduated from college three years ago (and is a faithful Obamaton just like his dad), had a good job until about a year ago, and has been out of work since. No complaints about Obama from him, but then he’s a 99er.

He got two job offers last week, and the one he’s leaning toward is a contract job in Afghanistan (he hasn’t told the rest of the family, and I’m not uttering a peep until he makes it official).

Ward Cleaver on May 24, 2011 at 4:35 PM

The only places you will see this is here or some republican congress members website.My question, is the entire MSM exempt from these high prices?Do they get free health care and discounts on food and clothing for being lapdogs to this administation?Is their pay so good that it doesn’t affect them?

docflash on May 24, 2011 at 4:33 PM

The reporters and anchors are well-paid, and if they work in NYC, they probably don’t drive a whole lot, so gas prices are no big deal. Plus, they’re mostly slobbering Obamatons, so they think high gas prices are a good thing.

Ward Cleaver on May 24, 2011 at 4:38 PM

My question, is the entire MSM exempt from these high prices?Do they get free health care and discounts on food and clothing for being lapdogs to this administation?Is their pay so good that it doesn’t affect them?

docflash on May 24, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Definitely not the entire media. Lots of folks have been laid off from newspapers, magazines, and networks in the last few years. Why they can’t put 2 and 2 together is beyond me.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:40 PM

Let the news blackout begin!

If Fox doesn’t have Issa on, the general public will never hear about this.

PattyJ on May 24, 2011 at 4:42 PM

No kidding, there’s a tap on Youtube of him saying this is just what he wants to happen.

Sharr on May 24, 2011 at 4:48 PM

Not to mention the effect of printing money on prices…..

tomg51 on May 24, 2011 at 4:49 PM

Definitely not the entire media. Lots of folks have been laid off from newspapers, magazines, and networks in the last few years. Why they can’t put 2 and 2 together is beyond me.

Doughboy on May 24, 2011 at 4:40 PM

For liberals, communists, and socialists, ideology trumps integrity.

capejasmine on May 24, 2011 at 5:16 PM

The 52%ers have lost their rights to bit*h.

CWforFreedom on May 24, 2011 at 5:18 PM

OT- Can anyone splain to me the purpose of the Odumbo tour of Europe other than the “See I’m a nice guy you should have invited to the wedding tour.”

rjoco1 on May 24, 2011 at 4:03 PM

It’s his get out of Dodge week. He screwed up with his speech about Israels 67 borders, and something tells me, he was fully aware of this info coming to light. Not to mention his new internet czar looking for the truth about him, and his administration, and his administration pushing Congress to give Obama more powers over the internet.

It gives him an out, and a vacation too.

capejasmine on May 24, 2011 at 5:24 PM

An admin (black) at work came over to my co-worker (who is also black) to gush about some Obama publication that she just got in the mail. It was all that I could do to keep my mouth shut. I wanted to say, “How in the name of God can you call yourself a conservative, and not see what a horrible POTUS he is?!”

disa on May 24, 2011 at 5:36 PM

Can anyone splain to me the purpose of the Odumbo tour of Europe other than the “See I’m a nice guy you should have invited to the wedding tour.”

rjoco1 on May 24, 2011 at 4:03 PM

He’s looking for his Irish birth certificate.

disa on May 24, 2011 at 5:37 PM

This policy is news to no one who has been paying attention.

Artificially raising energy costs through regulatory action has long been a policy goal of the eco-fascists who permeate the EPA and the Obama administration, from that lying, prevaricating peabrain Lisa Jackson on down. (How long will we continue to tolerate blatant perjury in Congressional testimony from these lawless oligarchs?) Obama agrees with them, and he has turned them loose on the American people and the American economy.

Sadly, the folks hit hardest are the working poor. The increased cost of gasoline and heating energy is not significant to the ruling class.

It is despicable, but it isn’t news.

novaculus on May 24, 2011 at 5:38 PM

All hat, no cowboy there Issa.

DO SOMETHING !

stenwin77 on May 24, 2011 at 5:40 PM

Yet the GOP can’t take advantage of it.

The Stupid Party.

rickyricardo on May 24, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Gassing up with Obama (video): http://www.politizoid.com/component/seyret/?task=videodirectlink&id=53

onlineanalyst on May 24, 2011 at 7:11 PM

Rep. Issa is all talk and no action.How many times have we seen Issa as a headline and what he is going to to do ? Issa is a “Gunna do this” , “Gunna do that” and in the end Issa’s, “Gunna do nothing” ! What’s he also Gunna do about Project Gunwalker ? Sorry Darrell but folk out here are really hurtin and all we hear is talk from you when the country requires urgent action!

Sandybourne on May 24, 2011 at 7:46 PM

If, somehow, this clown gets four more years, I do not believe America can recover. Thanks liberals, how is that hopenchange working for you at the gas pump? Morons.

ultracon on May 24, 2011 at 7:54 PM

ISSA?………….meh, put up or SHUT UP Darrell!

PappyD61 on May 24, 2011 at 8:30 PM

It’s good to see that many here are seeing Jihad Darrell as a charlatan who refuses to put up. That is progress.

I ask all proud Conservatives to research this fraud. He is more odious than Rahm Emanuel, and that is NOT hyperbole.

Jihad Darrell. Who loved Syria and said 9/11 was merely “a plan crash”…and this was in 2008!

HE. CAN’T. BE. TRUSTED.

Gob on May 24, 2011 at 11:11 PM

Might as well let the Sierra Club run things. And PETA. And Green Peace . . . . and the UN. And the socialists and the commies. The bulk of our “educators”. Plus those who hate liberty, democracy, and our great Republic.

Uh-oh . . . I am getting a bad feeling.

Sherman1864 on May 24, 2011 at 11:15 PM

search4truth on May 24, 2011 at 3:33 PM

Yes.
He lead the Gov. Gray Davis recall.

DSchoen on May 25, 2011 at 4:39 AM

Jihad Darrell. Who loved Syria and said 9/11 was merely “a plan crash”…and this was in 2008!
HE. CAN’T. BE. TRUSTED.
Gob on May 24, 2011 at 11:11 PM

You do know your source on “Who loved Syria” is the Tehran Times?

“and said 9/11 was merely “a plan crash””

Sorry, but he never said this.

One more thing, do you have any idea where Issa district is and what is in it?

To the North, Camp Pendleton
to the South, MCAS Miramar!
to the North East US Navy weapons Station Fallbrook.

Hint: There’s a LOT of military people that live there.
There’s even more ex-military that live in his district.
They haven’t bought these smears as Issa keeps getting re-elected!
Dude, WND, Tehran Times and Alex Jones and Debbie Schlussel are not credible sources.

DSchoen on May 25, 2011 at 5:46 AM

DSchoen on May 25, 2011 at 5:46 AM

YOU’RE wrong. I have no idea why you are pandering for pan-Islamist Issa!

HERE is the 9/11 article.

Here is the New Yorker article on Issa. Starts off slow and then builds up speed.

STOP trying to sully the name of DS. She is someone who actually does investigative journalism and am tired of this blog trying to dismiss her.

I ask each individual to do their OWN research and check her out on her own. THAT is how you will know the truth (or your own truth, if that is how you roll).

INVESTIGATE YOURSELF. That is only fair.

Gob on May 25, 2011 at 8:34 AM

DSchoen on May 25, 2011 at 4:39 AM

Yeah, and Jihad Darrell wanted to run for Governor HIMSELF but the Republican establishment wisely told him “No way, Jose”. And the rest is history. Schwartzenegger became Gov. RINO supreme.

And the estanlishment was WISE to pull Jihad Darrell out of the game because his past makes Rahm “Dead Fish” Emanuel look like a piker. They knew it and didn’t want to chance the almost-in-their-hands win. That’s why Jihad Darrell blubbered his way out of contention.

Read The New Yorker article for clarification. Sometimes left-wing hit pieces are filled with FACTS. Can’t blame the horrible leftist for that when they are going after a dodgy pan-Islamist.

Gob on May 25, 2011 at 11:32 AM