McCarthy: 'You cannot just shut off Russian gas and not produce in America'
"I know the president looks to try to go to Iran or Venezuela, that's one dictator for another," the House GOP leader says
March 10, 2022 5:36am
Updated: March 10, 2022 9:30am
House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said Wednesday the Biden administration's ban on Russian oil imports doesn't go far enough to address the gas price crisis in the U.S.
The California Republican said negotiating with dictators in Venezuela or Iran on oil imports is not the way to go.
"I wish we did something more," he said during a press conference. "You cannot just shut off Russian gas and not produce in America. I know the president looks to try to go to Iran or Venezuela, that's one dictator for another. You're just trading it."
McCarthy said California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom has reduced oil production in their state and replaced it with oil from foreign countries like Russia.
The Democratic-led House is debating the Suspending Energy Imports from Russia Act on Wednesday before members of the chamber's Democratic conference head to a retreat in Philadelphia that runs through Friday.
McCarthy wants the administration to increase domestic oil production to combat rising gas prices, now at about $4.25 a gallon for regular.
He also during the press conference played a clip of California Democrat Rep. Ro Khanna asking oil company executives at a congressional hearing why they aren't producing less oil like Europe to reduce the supply of oil and gas.
"I don't think Europe wants to be Europe today," said McCarthy, as Russia leader Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraines roils energy markets and sent barrel prices soaring. "I think they realize they made a mistake. The leaders of the Democratic Party want to put us in the same weakness and strengthen Putin's hand."`
McCarthy also pointed out Biden shut down the Keystone XL oil pipeline project, from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast, when he took office last year.