Sunday, September 27th, 2015 and is filed under Oil & Gas
As the Republican race for nomination heats up, candidates are seeking to appeal to the energy producers of the nation and courting the energy vote. Carly Fiorina joined the list of candidates to visit Oklahoma where she spoke at an invitation-only town hall discussion with the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association. The event was co-sponsored by the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance and the National Stripper Well Association. The U.S. is poised to be a “global energy powerhouse of the 21st Century,” she said, “I need your support. I need your votes. I need your prayers. But I can win this job. And if you care about your industry, you need me to win this job.”
“When I launched my campaign on May 4, less than 3 percent of the American voters had ever heard my name or knew I was running for president,” she said. “So what does that tell you? People want a leader who can get things done. It also tells you that when people hear me … they tend to support me.”
Earlier that same morning Jeb Bush had made an appearance at a private fund-raising breakfast in Oklahoma City before pressing on to pitch his own energy plan before the employees at Rice Energy, Inc., in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. “As president, I would approve the XL pipeline, for crying out loud. That is the lowest hanging fruit,” the candidate pledged.
Texas senator Ted Cruz was a guest of the OIPA in August when he said “If you look at the way the regulatory state is growing, it is out of control. It is a permanent branch of government: unelected bureaucrats. Just under Obamacare, there are over 20,000 pages of regulation. It’s over seven feet tall.” He said “If we come out of 2016 with a mandate, that’s how you get major legislative change. You have to make it more politically risky to do the wrong thing than the right thing.”
Cruz was introduced at the event by Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Tulsa, who endorsed Cruz and has gone as far as co-sponsoring the American Energy Renaissance Act with the Texas senator. Bridenstine said of his legislative partner “Ted Cruz is a leader among leaders. He is somebody that stands for what we all believe in in this room. I want to do everything I can to get this gentleman elected.”
In the video below, Senator Ted Cruz addresses the 2014 Conservative Policy Summit to discuss An American Energy Renaissance.
In early September the OIPA also sponsored a visit by another Republican senator when US Senator Marco Rubio spoke before the Wildcatters Club where he, like his competitor Jeb Bush, supported returning control of energy regulation to local state authority.
“I will …work to empower states to regulate energy production within their own borders. Washington is currently on a crusade to take control of the production of energy, especially oil and gas, away from the states. Yet state and local governments are far better equipped to oversee energy production and balance it with environmental concerns.” he stated in an op-ed that morning published by National Review. He also stated “…this week, President Obama traveled to Alaska to talk not about seizing our energy potential, but about limiting that potential through environmental policies that grow government and raise costs. I believe this is an outrageous misalignment of priorities.”
Meanwhile, in the center ring, Donald Trump has yet to declare a definitive policy position on energy but has drawn controversy for his statements calling climate change a hoax and declaring oil is the lifeblood of all modern societies.
On the other hand, Senator Rand Paul has more clearly outlined his support of the energy industry and limited government interference on his campaign website.
There is an incredible number of declared candidates but the serious ones have made their positions on the issue of domestic energy production and free trade well known. Now it is up to the voters in those areas most immediately affected by the industry to make their voices heard. Whoever the winner turns out to be will certainly enjoy the leverage of a much improved U.S. Energy production capacity for some time indeed. Therefore the energy vote is a valuable one to have.
The path to the White House is a longer one this year than any year to date and most candidates recognize that having a sound plan of action and a clear strategy is the only sure way to sway votes among those in the energy production sector. Expect to see more courting of these votes and a lot more cross checking of Congressional voting records and well-planned policy positions. In the end, the winner of the energy vote will certainly have the inside track.