Two days after leaving through the front door he’s trying to sneak back in through the side. Jim DeMint is up in arms, as is Heritage:

This comes as both a stunning and ridiculous development; Americans are still coping with high energy prices and coming to grips with a plan to bailout Wall Street, and Senator Reid is denying access to potentially one of America’s most abundant energy reserves. Just how much energy you ask?

Dr. Daniel Fine of MIT reported that 750 billion barrels worth of oil shale have been discovered in Colorado alone. That amount is enough to potentially power the U.S. economy for many decades. Furthermore, if full-scale production begins within five years, the U.S. could completely end its dependence on OPEC by 2020…

In essence, Senator Reid is stripping the decision rights away from his colleagues in other states.

Here’s a fact sheet from Gingrich’s American Solutions group noting that America’s oil shale deposits are fully three times the size of Saudi Arabia’s proven oil reserves, and here’s the contact information for all 100 senators. Go rattle some cages. Exit question: How about a hastily arranged presser for the Barracuda to stress her outrageous outrage at this development?

Update: A reader e-mailed Reid’s spokesman for comment and got this reply. I’m not kidding about rattling cages.

There is a possibility the Senate will be asked to vote on reestablishing the moratorium on oil shale extraction. Although Senate Democrats support measures to increase this nation’s energy supply, oil shale extraction has not been proven to be economically viable, will produce more greenhouse gases, and will significantly decrease the West’s water supply.