Accountability..it's for the little people.
My jaw dropped when I happened to see this in the WAPO, of all places, as an in-house editorial:
WHY NOT have a vote on offshore drilling? There's a serious debate to be had over whether Congress should lift the ban on drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf that has been in place since 1981. Unfortunately, you won't be hearing it in the House of Representatives -- certainly, you won't find lawmakers voting on it -- anytime soon.
Instead of dealing with the issue on the merits, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), a staunch opponent of offshore drilling, has simply decreed that she will not allow a drilling vote to take place on the House floor. Why not? "What the president would like to do is to have validation for his failed policy," she said yesterday when asked that very question. "What we're saying is, 'Exhaust other remedies, Mr. President.' . . . It is the economic life of America's families, and to suggest that drilling offshore is going to make a difference to them paycheck to paycheck now is a frivolous contention. The president has even admitted that. So what we're saying is, 'What can we do that is constructive?' "
If there is an explanation buried in there about why that makes offshore drilling off-limits for a vote, we missed it. Ms. Pelosi is correct that drilling is no panacea for the nation's energy woes. The short-term effect of lifting the moratorium, if there were any, would be minimal. That doesn't mean the country shouldn't consider expanded drilling as one of many alternatives. There are legitimate concerns about the environmental impact of such drilling -- environmental concerns that, we would note, exist in other regions whose oil Americans are perfectly happy to consume. But have technological improvements made such drilling less risky? Why not have that debate?
When they took the majority, House Democrats proclaimed that "bills should generally come to the floor under a procedure that allows open, full and fair debate consisting of a full amendment process that grants the Minority the right to offer its alternatives." Why not on drilling?
If drilling opponents really have the better of this argument, why are they so worried about letting it come to a vote?
The Washington post doesn't answer the question, so I will.
It's quite simple, really. It's an election year, and Barack Obama and the Democrats are trying to create as much economic chaos as they can because they feel it helps them in November...and the pain working families will feel at the pump and at the grocery store is just too damn bad.
The worse the economy gets, the more the Democrats will try to beast the class warfare drum and demonize Bush's 'failed energy policy' as Pelosi does above...especially since their major campaign tactic is to try and equate McCain with Bush.
It's despicable,but there it is.
These are the same people who for years have consistently stopped the United States from becoming energy independent by vetoing nuclear plants, going after shale oil, building refineries, exploiting the oil riches of a small part of ANWR and yes,offshore drilling.
Had even the ANWR proposal been passed when it was first proposed during Bush's first term, we would have that oil available today.
Remember that when you fill up at the pump or buy groceries...and especially when you vote in November.
Kudos to the editorial board of the Washington Post for even asking the question...which is more than most of the dinosaur media is willing to do.