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Press Release - "In Case You Missed It": McCain Campaign Conference Call On John McCain's Energy Policy

July 24, 2008

"This stands in stark contrast to the path that has been chosen by Barack Obama. Barack Obama has said no to additional oil exploration in the U.S. He has said no to additional natural gas exploration. He has said no more coal-fired power plants. He has said no to nuclear power plants. Barack Obama has a policy that means the United States will not have more energy as it tries to grow and it will simply have to live with higher prices." --Doug Holtz-Eakin

ARLINGTON, VA -- Today, U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign held a press conference call with Nancy Pfotenhauer, senior policy adviser and Doug Holtz-Eakin, senior policy adviser, to discuss John McCain's energy policy:

Nancy Pfotenhauer: "We want to bring your attention to the fact that Senator McCain is spending his time talking about how to solve the real problems that Americans are facing right now. Most particularly today, we're focused on the real problems that people are struggling with due to the high gas prices. I think the average price per gallon is up over four dollars across the country. And as such we are reaching out across the United States to pull together local leaders to talk about Senator McCain's plan for how to solve this problem and Doug will go through not just in the short-term but in the mid-term and eventually to get us off our dependency on foreign sources of energy all together.

"Specifically today, we will have events in North Carolina, Florida, Colorado, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, the Virginia/D.C. area, and New Jersey. And like I said, we will have local leaders together and will have press conferences and we'll make our statements available across the country. We will have folk like Governor Pawlenty who is going to be at our Minnesota event and Congressmen and women and other state elected officials participating in those events."

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Doug Holtz-Eakin: "We do want to talk about the important issues that face America today, and the Senator's talking about energy. He is committed to the Lexington Project, as Nancy said, to relieve us of our dependence on dangerous sources of foreign oil over the next 20 years. That's a strategy that is built on a recognition of the national security implications, the environmental security implications, but it's especially built on the recognition of the economic implications of energy in the United States.

"And right now we're seeing the implications of past policies that have failed. For three decades, the United States has known that it relies too much on imported oil. And in the absence of leadership, we have moved from importing 30 percent of our oil to importing 60 percent of our oil. And now, with oil peaking at $147 a barrel, gas prices over $4 a gallon, people are feeling the pinch."

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"John McCain has a comprehensive policy that begins with near-term tax relief for those buying gas at the pump, expand domestic exploration of both oil and natural gas -- natural gas is often overlooked, but, as I mentioned, it's feeding the high food cost. It is an energy source that is far less an international market. We pump our natural gas here. We use it here. We need to expand that production.

"It moves forward through time to also include a transformation of what we drive. Largely in the United States, imported oil is used for transportation. John McCain has committed to changing the transportation sector in the United States with flex-fuel vehicles, with plug-in hybrids, with cars that drive cleaner. He has a tax credit for cars that have zero carbon emissions coming out of their tailpipe and some credits for those that are cleaner than cars currently being driven. And he's offered a battery prize, something Barack Obama dismissed as a gimmick, despite the fact that he uses the same policy. John McCain uses that policy for something central to the future of America: the ability to drive an all-electric or hybrid vehicle cheaply and off an electricity sector that will look different than it does today.

"He'll commit to using coal, our most abundant natural resource, burning it cleanly and sequestering the carbon. He's committed to building 45 new nuclear power plants in the United States between now and 2030, to provide a stable source of energy for not just those electric vehicles, but for small businesses and households that are going to face higher heating costs. And, over the long term, he's committed to an environmentally respectful policy of cap-and-trade, which will bring the United States into global leadership on the issue of global warming.

"So his policies are ones which recognize the real economic duress that people feel right now, take bold actions to address them right now and for the foreseeable future, relieve us forever of our reliance on imported oil.

"This stands in stark contrast to the path that has been chosen by Barack Obama. Barack Obama has said no to additional oil exploration in the U.S. He has said no to additional natural gas exploration. He has said no more coal-fired power plants. He has said no to nuclear power plants. Barack Obama has a policy that means the United States will not have more energy as it tries to grow and it will simply have to live with higher prices. Barack Obama himself has said higher gasoline prices are fine; they just got there faster than he expected. He has said it would be fine to put new taxes on natural gas and on coal, raising those prices further.

"So there's a stark difference in the viewpoint of what is important for America and there's a stark difference in the nature of action. John McCain is committed to doing the hard things, reaching across the aisle at times when the nation needs action to take correction in its course. He has stood on the Senate floor with Russ Feingold for campaign finance reform. He has mobilized the Gang of 14 to have Supreme Court justices put on the court. He has stood with Ted Kennedy when it was important to address immigration.

"In contrast, Barack Obama is touring Europe and, back home, his leadership, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, are opposing any effort to expand exploration in the United States and trying to muddy the waters by bringing up a vote for additional LIHEAP help. John McCain supports making sure that those who are suffering from high energy prices get the help they need in this heating season, but he also supports solving the problem itself. And that is the major difference between the two candidates today."

ListenTo The Full Conference Call

John McCain, Press Release - "In Case You Missed It": McCain Campaign Conference Call On John McCain's Energy Policy Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/291743

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