Exclusive: House Republicans slammed President Biden in a letter on Thursday for implementing what they described as "anti-American energy policies," including the White House’s recent request for OPEC+ nations to ramp up production to help combat a global fuel crisis.
The letter to Biden from Carol Miller, R-W.Va., and more than 100 GOP lawmakers, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Minority Whip Steve Scalise, argued the administration risks emboldening "known American adversaries," including Russia and Iran, by pushing OPEC+ nations to increase production.
Republicans say the action is part of a pattern of policy initiatives, including the cancellation of the Keystone XL oil pipeline and a pause on new oil and gas permits on federal land, that have hurt American energy independence and contributed to the crisis.
"It is not in America’s interest to rely on these nations for energy," the lawmakers said. "Instead, eliminating barriers to American-produced oil and natural gas and its infrastructure will increase American economic and job growth, enhance national and energy security, and lower energy prices for American families."
In August, the White House called on OPEC+, a group comprised of members of the OPEC oil cartel and allies including Russia, to increase oil production faster than previously planned. At the time, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said higher gas prices "risk harming the ongoing global recovery," adding that OPEC+’s current production targets were "simply not enough."
Earlier this week, a White House official told Reuters the administration maintains its stance that OPEC should "do more" to address the crisis.
White House officials say they are exploring several options aimed at lower fuel costs, though they have yet to provide specifics. The price of gas has reached nearly $3.29 per gallon, an increase of more than $1 compared to one year ago.
Republican lawmakers say the administration’s effort to increase oil supply in order to lower prices is "valid." However, they argue Biden’s policies, including energy-related components of the president’s $3.5 trillion spending bill, will prove counterproductive.
"Unfortunately, your recent request of OPEC+ is consistent with a number of anti-American energy policies that your Administration and congressional Democrats are pushing," the lawmakers said.