As the New York Times called it this morning, the House had a “raucous vote” yesterday, with the Republicans barely pulling enough votes together to pass a bill which will supposedly “provide America with price stability and a bold plan for this nation’s energy future,” as Speaker Hastert said.
The bill’s language was so repugnant that many moderate Republicans abandoned the party line and were poised to vote against it. Hastert and Delay had to browbeat their own party members and managed, after flagrantly violating House rules by keeping the 5 minute vote window open for 40 minutes (as they scurried about trying to secure these votes).
In NPR’s coverage (NPR 10/7/05 Political Parties Spat Over Proposed Gas Act), what I found most interesting was the mention of memos FROM oil companies stating that shutting down refineries was primarily used for boosting profits – and it was noted that profits from oil refineries DOUBLED last year.
The Democrats were furious over violations of parliamentary procedure and more furious over what they term as a giveaway to big oil.
I would note that back in the late ’70s early ’80s, oil companies begged Congress to ease up on various environmental laws and corporate structure laws so that, as the oil companies said at that time, “…America wouldn’t be held hostage again to foreign oil interests.” One of the main things oil companies wanted to do was build new refineries. Certain clean air regulations were changed – and yet no new refineries have been built in the US since the late ’70s.
So the money that was “saved” that would “assist” the oil companies to build these refineries – where did the money go? Why were no refineries built?
Not that we don’t already know.
But when are we, as the People, going to ACT?