“Credit Obama with pulling off a small political coup – one you could even call triangulation lite.
“The price he paid in political terms was relatively small: Angry blowback from environmental activists who still support his overall climate change policy.
“But the short-term benefits were large: By announcing the policy change, Obama defused a potentially potent Republican issue ahead of the summer gas spike and the fall midterms, while embracing major elements of the GOP’s ‘all of the above’ energy approach to kick-start a stalled climate change bill…
“‘It’s not a bad thing to show you’re willing to do something that gets liberals angry right after you pass the biggest liberal bill in a generation,’ said a Senate Democrat staffer, whose boss opposes the policy.”
“Many Americans fear that President Obama’s new energy proposal is once again ‘all talk and no real action,’ this time in an effort to shore up fading support for the Democrats’ job-killing cap-and-trade (a.k.a. cap-and-tax) proposals. Behind the rhetoric lie new drilling bans and leasing delays; soon to follow are burdensome new environmental regulations. Instead of ‘drill, baby, drill,’ the more you look into this the more you realize it’s ‘stall, baby, stall.’…
“As an Alaskan, I’m especially disheartened by the new ban on drilling in parts of the 49th state and the cancellation of lease sales in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. These areas contain rich oil and gas reserves whose development is key to our country’s energy security. As I told Secretary Salazar last April, ‘Arctic exploration and development is a slow, demanding process. Delays or major restrictions in accessing these resources for environmentally responsible development are not in the national interest or the interests of the State of Alaska.’
“I’ve got to call it like I see it: The administration’s sudden interest in offshore drilling is little more than political posturing designed to gain support for job-killing energy legislation soon to come down the pike. I’m confident that GOP senators will not take the bait.”