OKLAHOMA CITY – In the nationwide Weekly Republican Address Saturday, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin said the energy crisis facing America isn’t caused by a lack of energy resources, but rather stems from a lack of leadership that starts “at the top” with the President. “America remains dependent on foreign oil from unstable and anti-Western regimes, and yet the President is blocking the pipeline that would transport oil to the United States from our neighbor and ally—Canada,” she said.
Fallin continued, “Millions of Americans remain out of work, but President Obama continues to propose job-killing tax hikes and obstruct the basic energy infrastructure projects that would lead to the creation of thousands of new jobs, not to mention more revenue in state budgets.”
A full transcript of the address follows:
“Hi, I’m Governor Mary Fallin from the Great State of Oklahoma.
“As you may know, Oklahoma is an energy state. Nearly one in seven jobs are supported by the oil and natural gas industry. And with our tremendous potential for expansion in wind power, we are also moving forward in the area of cutting edge, renewable energy.
“Energy production has long been an important part of our history, and our economy has benefitted tremendously from the health of the energy sector. Oklahoma has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation, at 6 percent. We are the number two state in the nation for job creation in the last 12 months and in 2011 our citizens experienced the 4th highest per capita income growth in the United States.
“We recognize that the energy industry is a valuable ally as we seek to create jobs and stimulate the economy, and that’s why Oklahoma Republicans continue to support the production of all kinds of energy resources.
“Our pro-energy policies stand in stark contrast though to the policies supported by President Obama and the Washington Democrats, who seem to view American-made energy as a hazardous waste rather than a resource.
“Last month, the President made his first visit to Oklahoma since being sworn into office.
“While he was here, he made some interesting claims.
“We were surprised to hear the President say he supports an ‘all of the above’ energy policy.
“Well, this is the same President whose party pushed a ‘cap and trade’ plan that would dramatically raise taxes on energy producers. Those tax increases would discourage energy production, drive up gas prices and utility costs for American families and destroy thousands of jobs.
“While he was in Oklahoma, President Obama also surprised us by taking credit for the southern leg of the Keystone pipeline—an important project that will allow Oklahoma energy producers to get their product to the market in the Gulf Coast.
“The only problem is… the southern leg of the pipeline didn’t need the President’s approval. It was already in the works.
“Here’s another inconvenient truth the President avoided: his administration is continuing to hold up construction on the northern leg of that pipeline—a project that would have created thousands of jobs and over a billion dollars in private investment. This from a President who says his number one focus is jobs.
“Finally, President Obama made the outrageous claim that his administration is responsible for the national increase in domestic drilling.
“Well, here’s the truth: drilling is increasing in the United States… on privately owned land. We have the ingenuity and the hard work of the American men and women in the private sector to thank for that.
“On public land, which President Obama is responsible for, drilling is rapidly decreasing. In fact, leases issued by the Bureau of Land Management are now less than half of what they were under former President Bill Clinton.
“And because of the severe limitations the President has put on drilling, especially offshore drilling, that number will continue to fall.
“The bottom line is this administration is taking credit for American energy production while it works to aggressively undermine it.
“Besides being hypocritical, the President’s double-talk is dangerous to our economy and our national security.
“We know that families, already struggling in this poor economy, are feeling pinched by rising costs at the gas pump.
“America remains dependent on foreign oil from unstable and anti-Western regimes, and yet the President is blocking the pipeline that would transport oil to the United States from our neighbor and ally — Canada.
“Millions of Americans remain out of work, but President Obama continues to propose job-killing tax hikes and obstruct the basic energy infrastructure projects that would lead to the creation of thousands of new jobs, not to mention more revenue in state budgets.
“It doesn’t have to be this way. The energy resources in the United States are enormous.
“In fact, shale deposits in the United States contain enough natural gas alone to power this country for another 100 years.
“Let’s be clear—the energy crisis we are facing today isn’t a lack of energy resources; it’s a lack of leadership. That starts at the top, with our President.
“Americans are paying the price for his failed policies—finding fewer jobs, higher gas prices, and less opportunity.
“Republicans have a better way. Across the nation, Republicans are supporting all kinds of domestic energy production and the jobs that come with it.
“The American people deserve an energy policy that creates a stronger economy, more jobs and opportunity, and the security that comes with American Energy Independence. We’re working hard to give them one.
“Thanks for your time, and of course, have a wonderful Easter weekend.”