Washington—United States Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH) today supported the Senate's vote to advance debate on the Stop Excessive Energy Speculation Act of 2008 (S. 3268), legislation focused on energy market speculation. The motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to the bill passed the Senate by a vote of 94 to 0.
Senator Gregg stated, "High oil and gas prices continue to weigh on the minds and the wallets of residents in New Hampshire and across the country. It's one of the most important – if not the most important – issues facing America. Congress can no longer afford to pay lip service and push empty gestures that fail to get at the heart of what's driving up prices at the gas pump and on home heating oil bills. We need more production, more conservation, and more renewable and clean energy as soon as possible.
"The debate on an energy speculation bill gives us a chance to move in the right direction, but it unfortunately focuses on a narrow aspect of an energy crisis that instead requires a balanced and comprehensive approach. America's growing energy challenge is primarily one of supply and demand, and while I have supported efforts to bolster regulation of the U.S. futures markets, we must also take immediate and aggressive action to bolster our energy independence and lower prices through increased domestic production of oil and gas, as well as support efforts to increase conservation, energy efficiency, and carbon-free energy sources. In short, we must produce more energy and use less.
"If Congress is going to act in the best interest of the American people, we must have a full and vigorous debate in the Senate that includes all options on the table, not a narrow debate defined by the majority looking to score political points during an election year. It's time we get serious about our nation's energy crisis and be willing work together, have an open and meaningful debate, and explore all possible solutions."