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On behalf of nearly 850,000 FreedomWorks members nationwide, I respectfully urge you to VOTE YES on the Gas Petroleum Refiner Improvement and Community Empowerment Act of 2007, or the Gas Price Act, Senator James Inhofe’s (R-OK) amendment to the energy bill currently before the Senate. This amendment would help stem the rise of gas prices by pushing for energy independence through an increase in domestic refinery capacity. This amendment would encourage more domestic oil production by easing the regulatory permitting process for the expansion of present refineries as well as the construction of new facilities. In addition, it would spur broader capacity and efficiency by reducing environmental permit hurdles and encouraging construction on closed military bases.
The current dilemma of high gas and oil prices needs to be addressed by opening up the market to increased production and competition. Enacting price controls and other regulations only decreases the incentives to pursue new avenues for increasing our energy capacity and efficiency. An increase in domestic production and expansion of new energy technologies will drive down prices naturally by boosting supply, making government price controls unnecessary. A rise in regulatory hurdles for refineries would raise production costs which in turn would continue to make gas prices less and less affordable.
Increasing domestic fuel supplies is the most effective solution to lessening our reliance on foreign oil and achieving energy independence. This amendment would provide incentives for investment in our energy market rather than restrictive mandates that continue to send jobs overseas. Rather than passing reactionary legislation, Congress needs to push for long-term, free market solutions to our energy needs that would lead to increased production, efficiency and capacity. We will count your vote on Senator Inhofe’s “Gas Price Act,” as a KEY VOTE when calculating the FreedomWorks Economic Scorecard for 2007. The FreedomWorks Economic Scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the Jefferson Award, which recognizes members of Congress with voting records that support economic freedom.
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