Oklahoma Congressman Tom Cole says the passing of two bills to strengthen the nation’s strategic energy reserves was one of the greatest accomplishments by the House in the past year.
In comments about the year 2023, the Republican Rep. said it came after the Biden administration spent two years undermining the national security by draining the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
“That’s why in the House’s first two weeks of session in the 118th Congress, House Republicans passed two bills to protect and strengthen the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) and boost U.S. energy production,” wrote Cole.
“First, the Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act would block the selling of any amount of the SPR to Communist China. And the Strategic Production Response Act would prohibit non-emergency drawdowns of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and require increases in oil and gas production on federal lands to offset future drawdowns of this reserve.”
The following is his release prior to the end of 2023:
Ahead of regaining the majority of the U.S. House of Representatives, House Republicans made several commitments to the American people. While we certainly faced a challenging year, we also delivered on these commitments and have numerous accomplishments to bring back to our constituencies.
For two years, the Biden Administration has undermined our national security by draining our strategic energy reserves to the lowest level in almost four decades. That’s why in the House’s first two weeks of session in the 118th Congress, House Republicans passed two bills to protect and strengthen the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) and boost U.S. energy production. First, the Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act would block the selling of any amount of the SPR to Communist China. And the Strategic Production Response Act would prohibit non-emergency drawdowns of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and require increases in oil and gas production on federal lands to offset future drawdowns of this reserve. The sole purpose of the SPR is to protect our country during national emergencies and is exactly what these bills would accomplish. The Lower Energy Costs Act also passed the House this year and would increase domestic energy production and put an end the Biden Administration’s disastrous Green New Deal-style agenda. By unleashing U.S. energy resources, we can lower energy costs and ensure the U.S. is not reliant on others that do not have our best interests in mind.
Next, as the U.S.-Mexico border continues to be a chaotic scene of President Biden’s own making, the Secure the Border Act of 2023, which passed the House this year, is a complete rejection of President Biden’s border policies and purposeful inaction. The open southern border has allowed drug cartels to smuggle fentanyl across the border and destroy countless futures in just a few short years. In response, House Republicans passed the HALT Fentanyl Act which would permanently list all fentanyl-related substances on Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act and ensure
s they stay off our streets.
As Bidenflation continues to crush American households, House Republicans passed the Reduce Exacerbated Inflation Negatively Impacting the Nation (REIN IN) Inflation Act. It would require publishing the inflationary impact of executive actions projected to cause an annual gross budgetary effect of at least $1 million before enacting them and require the White House to report these findings to Congress each year. During his tenure, President Joe Biden has issued an unprecedented amount of unchecked executive orders that have cost Americans nearly $1 trillion along with the additional cost of runaway inflation. While the prices of almost all goods and services continue to rise and year-over-year wage growth continues to decrease, this should serve as a wakeup call that this administration must reverse course.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought certain issues to light including the chipping away of parental rights in their children’s education in some communities. By means of virtual classroom settings throughout the coronavirus pandemic, parents discovered what exactly their children were learning in school, and many were rightfully shocked to find divisive topics like Critical Race Theory and progressive gender ideology included in some curriculums. There is certainly a need to refocus curriculum to essential topics versus leftist ideology in some states. Parents knowing what is happening in classrooms is not a controversial matter, and the House-passed Parents Bill of Rights Act would ensure that parents have a voice in their children’s education and that schools establish a direct line of communication with parents.
In the last two years due to the reckless and out-of-control spending policies of President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats, more than $6 trillion has been added to the national debt. House Republicans negotiated a responsible increase to the debt limit that is coupled with commonsense reforms. The Fiscal Responsibility Act avoided a detrimental default on our national debt while also keeping the promise to the American people of cutting spending year-over-year while giving an appropriate increase to defense spending and without cutting money for veterans. This legislation clawed back $28 billion in unspent COVID-19 pandemic relief money that was no longer needed, included major reforms to work requirements and blocked the president’s demand for $5 trillion in new taxes.
The greatest threat our country faces today is the rise of the Chinese Communist Party. I applaud former Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy for rightly creating the Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party. This committee works in a bipartisan manner to build consensus and develop a plan of action on the threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party including the Uyghur Genocide, aggression towards Taiwan and technological advances.
These issues are important to the American people, and House Republicans have delivered on our promises. As we return to work for the second session of the 118th Congress, I hope the Senate will come to the table and try to move some of these critical legislative items for the American people. In the interim, House Republicans remain committed to continue working to pass legislation to secure the southern border, fight inflation, reject Bidenomics and much more.
Source: Cole press release