Sep 082005

House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) said yesterday that conservative leaders plan to use the post-Katrina gas price woes to push through "a sweeping new energy bill." The legislation will likely include provisions for millions more in subsidies to profit-flushed energy firms that "were jettisoned from earlier energy legislation passed before Congress left for the August recess." DeLay claimed the hurricane showed the need to increase domestic production, and Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) "recommended drilling in Alaska and in coastal states where offshore drilling currently is banned." But yesterday, a watchdog group released internal oil company memos showing "how the industry intentionally reduced domestic refining capacity to drive up profits," in spite of the fact that "the oil industry blames environmental regulation for limiting [the] number of U.S. refineries."

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