DANIEL VAUGHAN: US Needs Energy Independence, Not Another Iran Deal

Oil prices were high before entering 2022. Since crossing into the new year, those prices have shot up. Uncertainty from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is likely to send those prices even higher. You would think, given that reality, a top priority for the White House would be controlling oil prices. Not this White House.

One of the Biden administration’s first actions after inauguration was severely curtailing domestic energy production. Biden ended “drilling on about 23 million acres (9 million hectares) previously leased to energy companies.”

Those lands brought in billions in revenue. “Lease sales and royalties companies pay on extracted oil and gas brought in more than $83 billion in revenue over the past decade.” That decision was separate from Biden’s decision to end the Keystone XL pipeline.

Senator Tim Scott noted, “The United States imports nearly 600,000 barrels of oil a day from Russia. An amount that could have been made up for by the more than 800,000 barrels of oil the Keystone XL pipeline is capable of delivering each day if the Biden administration hadn’t stood in the way.”

And yes, the United States is importing oil from Russia, just like Europe. Even Democrats in Congress are angry at that fact. The White House is opposing Congressional efforts to ban Russian oil imports.

White House defends importing Russian oil.

When journalists grilled the White House on importing oil from Russia, Psaki was dismissive.

Our objective and the president’s objective has been to maximize impact on President Putin and Russia while minimizing impact to us and our allies and partners, and I know you’ve heard me say this a few times before, but we don’t have a strategic interest in reducing the global supply of energy, and that would raise prices at the gas pump for the American people around the world because it would reduce the store available.

The White House is desperate to control oil and gas prices. Americans have hammered Biden in approval polls for months as inflation continues unabated.

When questioned about domestic production, Psaki’s best comeback was to blame oil companies for not drilling. A sarcastic reply disconnected from the reality that Joe Biden has chosen the wrong course every day in the White House.

Faced with the reality that Vladimir Putin uses his energy grip on Europe, Biden knows he needs to act. The White House is desperate to portray a response. Instead of moving production to the United States and re-achieving energy independence, Biden does what all Democrats do: have someone else pump the oil.

Enter Iran.

The Biden administration’s desperation to rekindle the infamous Iran deal has led it back to the totalitarian Islamic regime. Axios reports that the United States and Iran are close to finalizing a new nuclear deal. The goal of that deal would be to allow Iranian oil to flow into the market, offsetting the loss from Russia.

Instead of buying oil from one evil, genocidal regime, we’re seeking supply from another evil government.

Markets have already started to price and factor Iranian oil into the supply chain. While a new Iran nuclear deal isn’t finalized, the desperation of the Biden White House to impact oil prices is moving the pact along. The United States seeks to prevent domestic production while granting business to the Iranians.

It’s a similar song and dance for Democrats out West. California infamously banned new oil and gas wells and phased out older ones. California has also shut down nuclear plants. That does not mean California curtailed its oil and energy usage. It just shifted sourcing from local areas to foreign ones.

California sources 24% of its oil production from the Amazonian forest region of Ecuador. Environmentalists have rightly pointed out the hypocrisy, where California is one of the driving reasons for destroying the Amazon rain forests.

Independence, not dependence.

The Biden administration repeats that mistake here, shifting from domestic sources to foreign. Instead of advancing a US domestic energy policy, they’re funding an Iranian regime that hates America, Israel, and anything in the West. Fear in the White House of oil prices pushes another lousy deal with Iran.

Sky-high energy prices strengthen the enemies of America. The Biden administration seems focused on dooming us to that mistake again.

The pathway towards security and affordable energy in the United States requires domestic energy. America needs a robust policy where we’re building hundreds of new nuclear plants, expanding natural gas, and producing our own oil. Those decisions would cost more, but they will be cleaner and more secure long term.

Some topics are hard to solve, but the choices here are apparent. Biden is mistaken in forcing America to become reliant on Iran. We need energy independence, not dependence.