Isakson: Congress Must Put Aside Partisanship, Work Together to Address High Energy Prices

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today urged members of Congress to work together to develop a comprehensive plan to address high energy prices during a speech on the Senate floor. Isakson said solutions that embrace all ideas – from conservation to increased domestic exploration – are at our fingertips if only members of Congress would put aside their partisan differences.

“The Congress of the United States is sitting on a ham sandwich starving to death,” Isakson said. “ America has within its reach every resource necessary to be self-sufficient when it comes to energy. All we have to do is have the political will and the common sense to make it happen.”

In his remarks, Isakson outlined a number of initiatives he believes will provide a balanced approach to America’s long-term energy needs, including oil and natural gas exploration on the Outer Continental Shelf, nuclear energy, conservation and renewable resources such as solar and wind energy. 

“I call on my colleagues, Republican and Democrat alike, to put their elephants and donkeys in the barn and look at the needs of the American people,” Isakson said. “If we leave this year without a comprehensive policy for energy independence, we have done a disservice to the people of the United States and we will not have fulfilled our Constitutional responsibility.”

Isakson praised the administration for its announcement on Monday that it is lifting the ban on offshore exploration, saying that we cannot decrease our dependence on foreign oil if we fail to explore our potential domestic supply.

That is absolutely something that we ought to do,” Isakson said of the offshore exploration. “We should be exploring every resource that we have.”

Isakson is a part of a bipartisan group of senators led by Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga. and Kent Conrad, D-N.D., that are committed to working together on legislation to address the nation’s energy crisis.