Nancy Pelosi’s House of Representatives yesterday passed on a party line vote a drilling bill that effectively allows no drilling. She hates drilling, and this bill was solely an attempt to avoid becoming the Former Speaker of the House. The Senate bills aren’t any better. Wherever the House bill would allow limited drilling, say in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, the Senate bill would forbid it.
The real story is that the Republicans know they are on the winning side of this issue and if they can kill this legislation, the moratorium will expire on September 30, and drilling can begin everywhere. The Dems can expect a filibuster, and, if they get by that, a veto from the President.
No matter what the proposal, it is expected to face a filibuster and no one has yet to predict with certainty that any drilling bill will garner the 60 votes needed to overcome such a roadblock.The drilling measure passed late Tuesday in a largely party-line vote by the House is unlikely to survive the Senate.President Bush, who has called for ending the offshore drilling bans, signaled he would veto the legislation if it reached his desk, arguing that it would stifle offshore oil development instead of increasing it.
The Republicans are in the catbird seat on this. They can force the Democrats to either pass an honest (heh) wide-ranging drilling bill or the alternative will be to just let the moratorium expire, in either case, drilling will begin. The Dems will cave, because if the moratorium expires, not only will drilling begin in places that would give them fits, the Republicans can show how they stopped additional Democratic attempts to limit America’s energy options.
Also find Bill Dupray at The Patriot Room