Pelosi's replies to GOP's call for a "commonsense" plan to lower gas prices

Fresh off her approval of the White House's push for high CAFE standards by 2015, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has written a letter (available after the jump) to Republican leader John Boehner over gas prices. The letter is a response to the GOP's challenge on Tuesday that Pelosi should release her plan to lower gas prices. As part of their challenge, the GOP said they
"respectfully request that you reveal this 'commonsense plan' so we can begin work on responsible solutions to help ease this strain."

Pelosi's basic message in the letter is to say that the "New Direction Congress" (is that what we have now?) is working on ways to promote American energy independence through moves that promote renewable fuels. She lists four bills that address fuel and energy issues, and doesn't forget to mention that the majority of Republicans were against two of them. Isn't it great how they can argue while we're paying through the nose?

Press Release:

Pelosi to Boehner: Join Us to Lower Gas Prices

WASHINGTON, April 23 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Speaker Nancy Pelosi sent the following letter today to House Republican Leader John Boehner in response to a letter sent to the Speaker yesterday by the GOP leadership.

Below is a text of the letter:

April 23, 2008

The Honorable John A. Boehner
House Republican Leader
H-204, The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

Thank you for your letter from the House GOP leadership yesterday on the issue of gas prices.

As you know, the New Direction Congress has passed several pieces of legislation to promote American energy independence, prevent the manipulation of oil prices, punish those who cheat consumers, and promote the development and use of renewable fuels.

The No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels (NOPEC) Act -- H.R. 2264

This legislation enables the Department of Justice to take legal action against OPEC-controlled entities for participating in oil cartels that drive up oil prices globally and in the United States. It does so by making clear that OPEC-controlled entities are not covered by the provisions of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act when acting in a commercial capacity; and it authorizes the Department of Justice to bring lawsuits in U.S. courts against cartel members. Passed: May 22, 2007; 345-72 (Dem: 220-5, Rep: 125-67).

The Energy Price Gouging Act -- H.R. 1252

This legislation will reduce the burden of rising gas prices on American families, providing immediate relief to consumers by giving the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) the authority to investigate and punish those who artificially inflate the price of energy. It ensures the federal government has the tools it needs to adequately respond to energy emergencies and prohibit price gouging -- with a priority on refineries and big oil companies. Passed: May 23, 2007; 284-141 (Dem: 228-1, Rep: 56-140).

Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act of 2008 -- H.R. 5351

With Exxon Mobil ranked as the most profitable company in 2007 today, it is unnecessary for taxpayers to subsidize Big Oil. This bill will end unnecessary subsidies to Big Oil companies and invest in clean, renewable energy and energy efficiency. It will extend and expand tax incentives for renewable electricity, energy and fuel, as well as for plug-in hybrid cars, and energy efficient homes, buildings, and appliances. These provisions are critical to creating hundreds of thousands of jobs. And the preservation of existing jobs relies on them too: a recent study showed that allowing the renewable energy incentives to expire would lead to about 116,000 jobs being lost in the wind and solar industries through the end of 2009. Passed: February 27, 2008; 236-182 (Dem: 219-8, Rep: 17-174).

Market Manipulation Provisions in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 -- signed into law in December -- made it unlawful for any person to report false information on the wholesale price of gasoline or petroleum and required the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to enforce and punish those found guilty of market manipulation. It is imperative that the FTC act now to crack down on these abusive practices.

I have enclosed a chart that displays the Republican leadership's record on these crucial pieces of legislation.

Yesterday, I wrote to the President encouraging him to support these initiatives. I hope that you will also join us in our effort.

Again, thank you for your letter, and I look forward to working together on behalf of America's working families.

best regards,


Speaker of the House

[Source: Office of the Speaker of the House ]

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