'Any energy plan worth its salt must contain a legitimate supply component'

House Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), in response to remarks from Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) as reported by the Associated Press demanding the Bush administration force the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to produce more oil, while at the same time continuing to oppose more oil and gas development in the United States:

"In making the argument that OPEC should ratchet up production, Sen. Schumer seems to be conceding that America needs more energy – a fact 300 million Americans already paying over $3.50 for [gasoline] have known for some time. But while the senator shows no restraint in demanding that other countries increase their production for the benefit of U.S. consumers, he and his colleagues remain adamantly opposed to any effort that would expand that production here at home.

"Republicans in the House believe that any energy plan worth its salt must contain a legitimate supply component – developing conventional sources of energy, along with renewables, nuclear, and coal to liquids. Sadly, that's a platform that has been roundly rejected by Democratic leaders – claiming on one hand they've got a 'commonsense plan' to rein in prices, but refusing to even consider unlocking additional reserves of energy on the other.

"At least Sen. Schumer apparently agrees that one of the key ways to reduce record-high gas prices is to increase our country's energy supply. I would only suggest that rather than relying on the kindness of OPEC members to increase that supply, perhaps the senator might reconsider his party's position against producing some of that energy domestically."

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