I oppose the Obama Administration's attempt to impose a cap-and-trade system on the American people.
Man-made global warming remains unsettled science. World-renowned climate experts have raised serious objections to the theories behind these claims. I believe it is a bad idea to impose a policy that will raise taxes on every American, will balloon energy prices and will hurt our economic competiveness -- especially on such uncertain predictions.
After failing to persuade Congress, the Administration is trying to impose a cap-and-trade system by bureaucratic fiat. In 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) specifically defined carbon dioxide -- a natural part of the atmosphere that you exhale and that plants need -- as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act. It was a way for the Administration to bypass legislators, so I co-sponsored the Energy Tax Prevention Act to keep the EPA from doing that.
In many ways, the EPA is a prime example of a federal agency that is out of control. A study commissioned by the Small Business Administration (http://archive.sba.gov/advo/research/rs371tot.pdf) showed that it costs Americans $1.7 trillion -- 1,700,000 times a million dollars -- to comply with federal regulations every year. That is too much. Regulatory burdens must be reduced if Americans are to be able to work and do business in the global economy. I will support efforts to rein in the power of federal agencies that are legislating though regulation -- something that will save us all a great deal of money, too.
As gas prices continue to rise, I cannot help but think of President Obama's remark in 2008 that under his energy plan "electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket." Shortly before President Obama picked him as energy secretary, Steven Chu suggested "somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe." These statements indicate that rising energy prices are the policy of this administration. I do not agree with that policy.
I also am concerned that this Administration has no plan to address our dependence on foreign energy sources, either in the short or long term. It is important to fully use our natural resources and reduce our reliance on foreign energy sources. We can develop these resources safely and in an environmentally sustainable way, and we must ensure that we do so. As domestic energy supplies grow, energy prices will fall.
I hope the Administration is seriously rethinking these economically destructive policies. Affordable and abundant energy helps to power our economy and create jobs.