One of President Joe Biden’s first acts upon taking office in January was to ban the issuance of oil and gas drilling permits on federal lands.
However, Biden’s new rule ran into a snag this week after his administration was hit by an injunction from a federal judge, the Daily Caller reported.
Trump-appointed Judge Terry Doughty, who presides over the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, sided with a coalition of Republican attorneys general by temporarily blocking Biden’s ban until their challenge to it has been resolved.
Louisiana AG hails decision as “a victory”
Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, praised Doughty’s decision in a statement provided to the Daily Caller Foundation.
“This is a victory not only for the rule of law, but also for the thousands of workers who produce affordable energy for Americans,” Landry said.
“We appreciate that federal courts have recognized President Biden is completely outside his authority in his attempt to shut down oil and gas leases on federal lands,” he added.
A coalition of 13 states –Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and West Virginia — announced in March that they were filing suit over the ban, arguing that it was a massive threat to America’s economic security.
“By executive fiat, Joe Biden and his administration have single-handedly driven the price of energy up — costing the American people where it hurts most, in their pocketbooks,” Landry said during a press conference Wednesday, according to The Daily Caller.
Biden orders “abandon middle-class jobs”
“Biden’s Executive Orders abandon middle-class jobs at a time when America needs them most and put our energy security in the hands of foreign countries, many of whom despise America’s greatness,” he continued.
The lawsuit argues that Biden’s policy is a violation of “both the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act and the Mineral Leasing Act, which affirm Congress’ intent to use U.S. resources to achieve energy independence.”
Democrats, the attorney general contended, “have discarded vulnerable dependence on foreign oil, which is why the court should reject the Biden Ban.”
In addition to not issuing new drilling permits, Biden has also been widely criticized for his cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline, which cost thousands of jobs.