June 25th, 2008
02:40 PM ET
10 years ago

McCain labels energy plan 'The Lexington Project'

McCain is calling his energy plan The Lexington Project.

McCain is calling his energy plan The Lexington Project.

LAS VEGAS (CNN) - John McCain pledged Wednesday that “in a world of hostile and unstable suppliers of oil,” the United States will achieve “strategic independence” from foreign oil by the year 2025.

For the first time, McCain labeled his energy plan "The Lexington Project."

Watch: McCain promotes 'The Lexington Project'

“Remember that name,” he told an audience at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas. “Named for the town where Americans asserted their independence once before.”

National security, he said, makes it imperative to wean the nation off its foreign energy needs.

“Energy security is a vital question because it concerns America's most fundamental interests, and above all the safety of our citizens from the violence of the world,” he said.

“All the tact of diplomacy cannot conceal a blunt reality. When we buy foreign oil, we are enriching some of our worst enemies. And in the Middle East, Venezuela, and elsewhere, these regimes know how to use the power of that wealth.”

McCain’s speech was an amalgam of the energy policy prescriptions that he has outlined in recent days on the campaign trail. He called for developing green technologies, building 45 new nuclear reactors, expanding clean coal research, and upgrading existing infrastructure.

He proposed incentives for creating new fuel-efficient vehicles and once again offered a prize of $300 million to the creator of a car battery that would far exceed current energy standards.

McCain, who has been admonished by Democrats and environmentalists for his call to lift the federal ban on offshore drilling, struck back at his critics in the speech.

“Opponents of domestic production cling to their position even as the price of foreign oil has doubled and doubled again,” McCain said. “They were against it when a gallon of gas cost two dollars. They are still against it when a gallon of gas cost well above four dollars.”

“As a matter of fairness, we must deal with the here and now, and assure affordable fuel for America by producing more of it ourselves,” he said.

Watch: McCain discuss partisan gridlock on energy policy.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (176 Responses)
  1. JD

    It's funny, the left advocated getting us off foreign oil after 9/11 and were shouted down. Is it only legitimte if it includes handouts to oil companies?

    June 25, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  2. April

    Lexington. That sounds elitist to me.

    June 25, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  3. 58 old white ladies for OBAMA




    June 25, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  4. Darrel from Denver

    Interesting that McCain's campaign are trying to tie words like 'security' and 'independence' to his energy policy. Sounds like marketing to me.

    2025 for energy independence sounds like a nice BHAG (big, hairy, audacious goal) we can all get behind and gives McCain yet another allusion (beyond the marketing mentioned above) of a Kennedy-esque approach to his candidacy – yet more marketing here I am sure. Having said that, what McCain is missing relative to oil dependency is that it goes WELL BEYOND simply taking about it in terms of gas prices. What everyone appears to be missing here is all the other critical uses of oil we are dependent on and, thus, will never be able to get out from under.

    McCain is simply marketing and sound bites trying to get elected. His policies and party are empty promises.

    June 25, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |

    well we have already waited 35 year since the Arab oil embargo to reduce our dependence on foreign oil so what's another 17 years? Maybe they couldn't do anything since 1973 because they didn't have a catchy name!

    June 25, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  6. Obama: 2nd Term Carter

    Wow I saw Obama's energy plan at his new website and it has many promises but no details how it get there. No shock there. He is a lot of talk and no change!!

    June 25, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  7. What's up with THAT?

    McCain, enough with your Lexington Project. I want to know since you stated today that you would not bring back the draft unless it was for "WWIII," just how are you going to sustain the troop level in Iraq and Afghanistan if this Godforsaken war continues or it escalates? How many revolving doors do our troops need to go through?

    You cannot possibly promise that there is not going to be a draft to the American People, or at least, not those of us who think for ourselves as we know better. When the numbers of those entering military service drop, you had best have a plan.

    June 25, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  8. Val, Atlanta, Ga

    Uncle Sam tell me, you are really being funny, joking right? And just by a slim chance he became President you think he would even remember when he was being sworn in, now I am forreal Sen Lieberman had to tell him to turn the microphone around he was talking and the Microphone was up side down now that was really funny. And this is who U can believe in?

    Obama 08

    June 25, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  9. David Goldman for OBAMA





    June 25, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  10. CelebGhost

    McCain is taking the lead in the energy problem...Obama is probably kicking himself right now for not getting on top of that. I agree with Matt above that the only way for this plan to succeed is if the Republicans and Democrats can unite on this issue and help lessen America's dependence for oil on other countries which helps drain our economy. Obama needs to come up with his own plan or unite before people start looking to McCain for the answer to the energy crisis.

    June 25, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  11. matt

    another mccain plan set so far in the future he is sure to be long gone, and the media attention will be gone with him as well. IT wont happen under republican control.

    June 25, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  12. What's up with THAT?

    Off shore drilling?

    Hell the oil companies aren't drilling on the 68,000 acres they already are leasing in the Gulf of Mexico. They are only drilling on 3,000, not even a quarter of what they can.

    June 25, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  13. Obama: 2nd Term Carter

    I saw Obama's plan and now have to ask where did he hide the details???

    June 25, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  14. Mimi De La Cruz for OBAMA




    June 25, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  15. mk

    Just don't believe this man could achieve anything to correct the downward spiral of this country's economic position. It's just talk..

    June 25, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  16. Yvette

    "He called for developing green technologies, building 45 new nuclear reactors"

    Green technologies and nuclear reactors don't exactly go hand in hand.........

    June 25, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  17. Mike from Westchester

    Is Lexington the name of a drilling machine?

    Of course, it merits investigation to see if he is proposing something that creates a sustainable energy plan, meaning renewable sources and reductions in energy consumption are higher priorities than nuclear power and drilling.

    BTW, no one who drives an SUV (unless truly needed) should be advocating drilling. You ARE the problem.

    June 25, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  18. James

    Oil supply is not the problem, it is the weak dollar and speculation. Roughly $50 by some estimates is due to speculation in the futures market. There is always a give back on that eventually with the market corrects.

    The second source is the weak dollar. For a debtor country weak dollar works great, letting us off the hook for foreign debt by devaluating foreign dollars held debt beyond inflation. The only downside is when we have to import something, like oil, we get creamed.

    If we really want to lower gas prices we first need to get our fiscal house in order so that a dollar is worth something overseas.

    June 25, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  19. Braden

    1) The oil from offshore drilling would not be available for 10 years, according to most estimates, and would lower world oil prices by a few dollars.

    2) $300 million might be enough to buy everyone in the US a pair of ethanol-powered rollerblades, not ween us off oil.

    3) Elimating the gas tax would lower gas prices by a few cents. And we would fund our road system with....???

    4) Nuclear power is a viable alternative, but who wants the radioactive waste? It's got to go somewhere.

    June 25, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  20. Chris P

    Is that Mrs McCain's money used for the battery prize – or taxpayer dollars?? No authorization/approval necessary to spend 300M??

    June 25, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  21. john

    Its the Lexington project today but will McSame remember the name tomorrow.

    And the Republicans want you to trust this guy with the Nuclear button.

    It's also clear that the Republicans are hoping for a 10/11 attack to boost McSame's chances

    Impeach Bush Chenney now.

    Obama for President

    June 25, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  22. Marie

    All those who want to view what Obama's energy plan is, will have to go to his sight. CNN won't cover it in the same why they give favor to McSame.

    June 25, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  23. aware

    Now, this is a plan Americans can live with!

    This former Democrat will vote for McCain 08! 🙂

    June 25, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  24. 58 old white ladies for OBAMA



    June 25, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  25. MMN - Milwaukee WI

    Was McCain one of the many that chastised Jimmy Carter 30+ years ago when he talked about Energy independence and conservations? Bring back the solar panel on the White House roof.

    Willow, from Iowa: I agree with you. Brazil did it but the USA we’ve only been playing politics for the last 30+ years.

    June 25, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
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