Washington, DC— Senators Ben Cardin and Jeanne Shaheen held a press conference this afternoon to call on Republicans to stop blocking Democratic efforts to make polluters pay for their actions, and help prevent the next oil spill by holding oil companies like BP accountable for their negligence. Republicans are trying to roll back critical environmental protections and sensible oversight that could help prevent the next oil spill, and give handouts to Big Oil instead. Tomorrow, the Senate will debate a resolution of disapproval from Senator Murkowski which would halt all efforts by the EPA to reduce the oil consumption of cars and trucks sold in America.
Yesterday, Senator Shaheen introduced legislation that would grant subpoena power to the bipartisan National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.
“I find it strange that, in the face of the crisis unfolding in the Gulf of Mexico, our Republican colleagues want to increase America’s oil dependence by billions of barrels,” said Senator Cardin. “When Senator Murkowski’s resolution comes to the Senate floor, it will be time for each of us to decide whose side we are on. I will choose to stand with the American people for a new energy future. Unfortunately, some others will stand with polluters and Big Oil, who would like nothing better than to remove the regulatory requirements that would help reduce our dependence on oil. What we are seeing in the Gulf today is what happens when regulatory enforcement is too weak to deter risky behavior. The American people have had enough.”
“In order to have a full and fruitful investigation, the commission must have subpoena power to get to the bottom of what did or didn’t happen leading up to the tragic explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig,” said Senator Shaheen. “We will not allow BP and the other companies responsible for this devastating oil spill to continue to stonewall the American people. I hope this legislation will be voted on as soon as possible, and I hope our colleagues on the other side of the aisle will join us. Working to prevent future disasters of this magnitude should be a bipartisan effort.”