West Virginia U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin didn’t pull any punches during a Thursday hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hear chairs.
The Democrat, who’s been a thorn in the side of President Biden’s more liberal approaches against the oil and gas industry told the committee and its witnesses the U.S. should use its abundant natural resources to fight Putin in his war against Ukraine.
“We have a full-fledged war going on in Ukraine by Russia with no end in sight until they conquer [Ukraine]. Where do they stop? What’s the end game? We don’t know. What we do know is that Russia has weaponized energy. They have used it as a geopolitical weapon,” charged Sen. Manchin.
“The thing I know about an adversary or a bully is if they have a weapon, you better have one that will match it or be better than theirs. And we do, we just haven’t used it [America’s vast energy resources]. How quickly we get it in production is going to determine whether we’re able to thwart [Putin’s aggression],” he continued.
In considering paths forward, Chairman Manchin asked the witnesses if the Defense Production Act and other tools should be used to meet the urgent need to increase the collective energy security of the United States and its allies in Europe.
During the hearing, the Senator reiterated the need for the Administration and the private sector to step up to the plate to ensure America is responsive to our immediate domestic needs and those of our allies.
Oklahoma U.S. Sen. James Lankford sits on the committee and joined the questioning of the witnesses at the 2:05 mark of the video. He began by saying he was grateful that oil and gas companies in the U.S. are still exploring for new energy.
To watch the hearing in full, please click here.