Thursday, April 1, 2010

Virginia Offshore Drilling: A Victory, a Smokescreen, or Both?

The big news of the day is that President Obama announced he supports drilling off the coast of Virginia. Some are viewing this as a victory for Bob McDonnell. He campaigned hard on the need to drill offshore, and use the procedes to fund transportation. The next step is to get congress to approve a bill that will give VA at least 37.5% of the royalties from the sale of the oil. If this can be accomplished VA will have found a major new revenue source for transportation.

While Virginian's are excited some House Republicans are not as excited. Rep. Mike Pence views this as a smokescreen and a vote buying move for Obama's cap and trade bill.
The President's announcement today is a smokescreen. It will almost certainly delay any new offshore exploration until at least 2012 and include only a fraction of the offshore resources that the previous Administration included in its plan. Unfortunately, this is yet another feeble attempt to gain votes for the President's national energy tax bill that is languishing in the Senate.

Bob McDonnell, congratulations on your victory. Movement on this issue from a president this liberal is certainly a pleasant surprise. Hopefully we can beat cap and trade, and still open up offshore drilling off the coast of VA.

No comments: