White House Backs Gas Exports

US President Barack Obama waves after delivering a speech at the Palais des Beaux-Arts (Palace of Fine Arts - BOZAR) in Brussels on March 26, 2014. Obama said Russia stood 'alone' on the Ukraine crisis as he paid his first ever visit to European Union headquarters, cementing Western opposition to the takeover of Crimea.
National Journal
Ben Geman
March 26, 2014, 12:13 p.m.

The White House made its strongest state­ment yet Wed­nes­day that it views U.S. nat­ur­al-gas ex­ports as one tool to curb Europe’s re­li­ance on Rus­si­an en­ergy and di­ver­si­fy sup­plies.

From the joint U.S.-European Uni­on state­ment is­sued along­side the U.S.-E.U. sum­mit in Brus­sels: “The situ­ation in Ukraine proves the need to re­in­force en­ergy se­cur­ity in Europe, and we are con­sid­er­ing new col­lab­or­at­ive ef­forts to achieve this goal. We wel­come the pro­spect of U.S. LNG ex­ports in the fu­ture since ad­di­tion­al glob­al sup­plies will be­ne­fit Europe and oth­er stra­tegic part­ners.”

Oth­er tools in­clude re­vers­ing nat­ur­al-gas flows to al­low oth­er E.U. na­tions to ship gas in­to Ukraine and more col­lab­or­a­tion on ef­fi­ciency, re­new­ables, and oth­er sources. Check out the whole thing here.

Pres­id­ent Obama, in re­marks in Brus­sels, more broadly said that en­ergy is a “cent­ral fo­cus” of the re­sponse to Rus­sia’s an­nex­a­tion of Crimea. “This en­tire event has poin­ted to the need for Europe to look at how it can di­ver­si­fy its en­ergy sources,” he said, The Wall Street Journ­al re­ports.

Obama poin­ted out that the pro­posed U.S.-E.U. trade deal, called the Transat­lantic Trade and In­vest­ment Part­ner­ship, would ease the way for send­ing U.S. gas to Europe.

“Once we have a trade agree­ment in place, ex­port li­cences for pro­jects for li­que­fied nat­ur­al gas destined to Europe would be much easi­er, something that is ob­vi­ously rel­ev­ant in today’s geo­pol­it­ic­al en­vir­on­ment,” Obama said after meet­ing with E.U. lead­ers, Re­u­ters re­ports. But that trade deal faces hurdles in Con­gress.

Na­tion­al Journ­al‘s Jack Fitzpatrick has some on-the-ground cov­er­age of Obama’s re­marks here.

And back on Cap­it­ol Hill, where there’s plenty of sup­port for ex­ports, one ana­lyst cau­tioned that there are real con­straints on the abil­ity of U.S. en­ergy re­sources to isol­ate Rus­sia.

“While the pro­spect of U.S. en­ergy ex­ports could use­fully re­duce Rus­si­an en­ergy ex­port rev­en­ues, U.S. ex­ports will not dis­place Rus­sia from its dom­in­ant po­s­i­tion in the European mar­ket; claim­ing oth­er­wise re­duces U.S. cred­ib­il­ity,” said Mi­chael Levi, a seni­or fel­low with the Coun­cil on For­eign Re­la­tions, in testi­mony to the House For­eign Af­fairs Com­mit­tee.

What We're Following See More »
BAD NEWS FOR CLINTON
Trump and Clinton Equally Disliked
2 hours ago
THE DETAILS

According to the most recent Gallup poll, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are equally disliked. The poll, conducted between July 18 and July 25, shows both major party candidates for president are viewed favorably by 37 percent of respondents and unfavorably by 58 percent of respondents. This poll is bad news for Clinton, who has received better favorable and unfavorable ratings in nearly every poll over the last year.

Source:
VP PICK TAKES DIFFERENT TONE THAN TRUMP
Pence: “Serious Consequences” if Russia Hacked DNC
2 hours ago
THE DETAILS

The same day that Donald Trump encouraged Russia to hack the State Department and "find the 30,000 emails that are missing," the GOP nominee for vice president took a more serious approach. "If it is Russia and they are interfering in our elections, I can assure you both parties and the United States government will ensure there are serious consequences," Pence said in a statement. Trump's comments at a press conference this morning were rebuked by individuals across the political spectrum, while some on Trump's team, including prominent surrogate Newt Gingrich, have called his comments a "joke."

Source:
ECONOMY STABILIZING
Fed Leaves Rates Alone, but Signals Hikes to Come
4 hours ago
THE DETAILS

The Federal Open Market Committee today voted to leave interest rates alone, but "upgraded its assessment of the economy’s recent performance and said near-term risks to the outlook have diminished, effectively leaving the door open to raise rates later this year, possibly as early as September."

Source:
CHARM OFFENSIVE
Pence Is Trump’s Man on Capitol Hill
6 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Spurred by VP pick Mike Pence, a former congressman with close ties to many lawmakers, the Trump campaign in recent weeks has stepped up its courtship of wary Capitol Hill Republicans. And the efforts appear to be bearing fruit." Central to the charm offensive: invitations to more than a dozen "Senate and House members into his family’s private box for some power-schmoozing with him and his kids" during the Republican National Convention.

Source:
PAUL RYAN: STOP IT
Trump Encourages More Spying by Russia
6 hours ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump essentially encouraged more Russian espionage against Democrats in a press conference this morning. "Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” he said. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.” That prompted Brendan Buck, spokesman for House Speaker Paul Ryan to say: “Russia is a global menace led by a devious thug. Putin should stay out of this election.”

Source:
×