Sen. Lisa Murkowski says history is on her side as she presses the Obama administration to relax restrictions on U.S. crude-oil exports.
The Alaska Republican, in a report issued Monday, catalogues cases in which Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and Clinton allowed some exports despite the general U.S. prohibition imposed after the 1970s Arab oil embargo.
“The historical record is clear that the executive branch retains the authority to permit crude oil exports under certain conditions,” the report states.
“Even statutes that generally prohibit the export of crude oil contain provisions that permit the president to authorize exports under certain conditions,” it adds.
Murkowski, the top Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, issued the report ahead of her Monday afternoon speech at the big IHS CERAWeek energy conference in Houston.
In January, she began calling on President Obama to relax limits on crude-oil exports.
But that effort faces pushback from some Democrats.
In a letter to Obama in late January, Democratic Sens. Edward Markey and Robert Menendez challenged the idea that federal officials have statutory leeway to relax current policies that only enable exports in limited circumstances.
And Monday, the environmental group Oil Change International issued a report that concludes that allowing major U.S. oil exports would worsen climate change.
“Allowing U.S. crude oil exports will result in increased profits that will in turn result in increased oil production,” the report states, arguing that producers would benefit from higher prices they can fetch in markets outside the U.S.
“While the exact amount of increased production is dependent on a variety of factors in the oil market, this analysis demonstrates that the average projected increase in oil production caused by removing the export ban would release the equivalent of the lifetime CO2 emissions from 42 coal plants,” the Oil Change International report states.
What We're Following See More »
"An emerging government funding deal would see Democrats agree to $15 billion in additional military funding in exchange for the GOP agreeing to fund healthcare subsidies, according to two congressional officials briefed on the talks. Facing a Friday deadline to pass a spending bill and avert a shutdown, Democrats are willing to go halfway to President Trump’s initial request of $30 billion in supplemental military funding."
The Michael Flynn story is not going away for the White House as it tries to refocus its attention. The White House has denied requests from the House Oversight Committee for information and documents regarding payments that the former national security adviser received from Russian state television station RT and Russian firms. House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz and ranking member Elijah Cummings also said that Flynn failed to report these payments on his security clearance application. White House legislative director Marc Short argued that the documents requested are either not in the possession of the White House or contain sensitive information he believes is not applicable to the committee's stated investigation.
The Washington, D.C. area will undergo "a full-scale exercise" Wednesday morning "designed to prepare for the possibility of a complex coordinated terror attack in the National Capital Region." The drill will take place at six different sites throughout the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia. The drill should not be taken as a sign that emergency services are expecting an attack, said Scott Boggs, Managing Director of Homeland Security and Public Safety at the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.
The Presidential Inaugural Committee "acknowledged late Monday that a final report it filed with the Federal Election Commission this month was riddled with errors, many of which were first identified through a crowdsourced data project at HuffPost." The committee raised about $100 million for the festivities, but the 500-page FEC report, which detailed where that money came from, was riddled with problems. The likely culprit: a system of access codes sent out by the GOP's ticketing system. Those codes were then often passed around on the secondary market.