July 30th, 2008
11:00 AM ET
6 years ago

Poll: Most Americans want offshore drilling

Most Americans are for offshore drilling but are split on whether it will change gas prices.
Most Americans are for offshore drilling but are split on whether it will change gas prices.

(CNN) - Most Americans favor an increase in offshore oil drilling but the public is split over whether or not it would result in lower gas prices in the next year, according to a just-released CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll.

More than two thirds of Americans say they favor increasing drilling efforts off America's costs while only 30 percent disapprove of such action. Those numbers come the same day President Bush publicly scolded Democratic congressional leaders for not putting his proposal to expand domestic oil drilling, specifically on the outer continental shelf, to a vote.

iReport.com: Is drilling the best option?

The issue has become a divisive one on the campaign trail, with John McCain in favor of lifting a congressional ban on offshore drilling while Barack Obama is opposed to such a proposal.

McCain has said such increases in drilling efforts could ease prices at the pump within a "matter of months." But Obama has said there is little evidence that drilling offshore would have any positive effect on American consumers and is instead pushing energy rebates.

The poll also shows Americans are divided when it comes to the effect of offshore drilling. Just over 50 percent think it will reduce gas prices while 49 percent say it will not.

More from CNNMoney.com

soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. clark

    Don't know where these stats are coming from. I haven't met anyone yet who endorses more drilling!

    July 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  2. americalives

    Why isnt Barack Obama not opening up a huge lead on John McCain?

    All the factors point to a very large Obama win but its not materializing.

    I would really like you to come to

    AmericaLives.wordpress.com

    and post why you think this lead isn’t coming to past. Can anyone explain this ? Give it a shot

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  3. VON BISMARK,Vienna.

    mcWAR is taking advantage of the desparate economic situation to pander to the voters.Any difference with Hitler?

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  4. cmoore

    It's about the oil stupid......

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. Amazed by Uneducated Americans

    Why is no one talking about the environmental impact? Oil spills washing up on beaches...dead animals...millions of dollars in cleanup, funded by taxpayers....

    WE DO NOT NEED MORE OIL.

    We need to figure out how to use less. Hydrogen, solar, and wind power...require the oil companies to spend 30% of their profits on research into alternative forms of energy....AND...set up organizations to do the research with those funds (do not leave this to the oil companies) and have an oversight committee.

    NO DRILLING. The people voting for this are the ones who don't live on the coast or where drilling will not affect them. What about those of us in the states with beautiful beaches? We don't want this. This is a BAD idea.

    PS: Drilling for oil wouldn't have an impact at the pump for at LEAST 6 years. And by that time, we had BETTER have made major advanced in alternative energy sources.

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  6. Alice Gentry

    Obama's comments about "little evidence" that drilling will have short term impacts equates to his comments that there has been no improvement in Iraq. The man closes his mind to truth and so many of you are foolishly grasping at every word like he is God. You are just wrong.

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  7. GIFTY

    Please Americans, do not vote Obama for President, He will be worse than any served president in the world.

    The Devil you know is better than an angel you do not see/know.
    Forewarned is forearmed.
    John 08-16

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  8. Obama 08: mature, white woman

    Where is it going to be refined?? How long until sufficient refinery capacity and who will want it in their backyard?

    Even if the Congress lifts the ban, will the states want it? How long will this take to decide? What guarantee is there that the companies will actually drill as they are not drilling on the leases they have? How can all of this be in the matter of months? Why would oil companies reduce their profits?

    When will CNN actually ask the hard questions?

    July 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  9. BR

    Yeah, let's not drill geniuses. Let's keep sending $700 billion a year to foreign countries. No wonder you guys think the Messiah is great. Why not drill here, with our workers, and pay our companies for oil. Wow, I know that is tough to comprehend. Instead, let's ban McDonalds, because that will help with something. Liberalism is a mental disorder.

    July 30, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  10. Biffington, Biff

    Maybe if the corporate press was actually telling us about the CURRENT oil spill, we would be able to make a little more INFORMED decisoin.

    July 30, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  11. Lola

    All Alternative energy sources are welcome: wind turbine, solar system, cars with fuel efficiency INCLUDING offshore oil drilling so we can be FREE from oil in Middle East!!!!!

    I became Ex Democrat after Hillary suspended her campaign and I am so glad to be Independent because I could not stand the super arrogant delegates like Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean and above all, Obama!!!! These people are representatives for no one accept themselves!

    July 30, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  12. Dwight

    you have oil companies making record breaking profits.oil is already there where they are drilling. they just need to drill more , where they have rights to.the oil companies aren't even drilling enough where they can.the oil companies are holding on to land that thay could drill.
    there is no guarantee the oil comapanies will even have the oil that they drill for provide it to us for cheaper rates now or later.

    Obama 08

    July 30, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  13. Rocky

    This should be a no brainer for two reasons. For one it would reduce our reliance on Middle East oil which will come back to bite us some day and over time it will lead to lower prices. Alot of people say this won't help for five or ten years and they may be right. All that really means is we should of done it five or ten years ago. Until the Congress decides to do whats right for the average person in this Country instead of political posturing they will never work together to solve this problem. This is the biggest problem we face I wonder when the two candidates will figure this out.

    July 30, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  14. GIFTY

    LISTEN TO THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE

    July 30, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  15. WeCanSeeRightThruObama

    CNN really has a lot of experts on oil drilling, ecology and energy posting comments on this board. Geez, I wish these 'experts' were doing something with their time rather than posting on message boards. Your 'expertise' is just being wasted here.

    Or... is it that you're not really 'experts' and instead you're just spouting off the same unfounded talking points we've heard a million times already.

    July 30, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  16. Richard

    Drill here, drill now...drill in my backyard! No good can come out of needing 70% of our energy from foreign sources. This is urgent and needs an urgent solution. I like Mccain's plan...the man knows enough to know that we need to tackle an urgent problem with an agressive and urgent solution. Mccain is proposal the most comprehensive, rational and balance solution I've heard so far. He is proposing off shore drilling, nuclear power, clean coal, biofuels, solar, wind, electric cars and conservation. He is leaving no stones in turned noting that all progress made on each front will play a piece in building a bridge that will take this country from point A (energy dependency) to point B (energy independent).

    This energy issue is very serious. At any given time...a decision or two from one or two countries can immobile american industries, transportation and military in a flash! No country can put itself in this position of vulnerability! We are at a cross road....no more talk, we need action, we need to get our butts off foreign energy ASAP!

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  17. Bushed!!!

    Most American want offshore drilling
    The poll also shows Americans are divided when it comes to the effect of offshore drilling. Just over 50 percent think it will reduce gas prices while 49 percent say it will not.

    President Bush publicly scolded Democratic congressional leaders for not putting his proposal to expand domestic oil drilling, specifically on the outer continental shelf, to a vote

    ****.Why Now Mr Bush?*****

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  18. banderson

    This is absolutely amazing. The republicans have managed to get another issue on the table through the mouthpiece of the meda. Why are we not hearing about the 68 million acres that these people currently lease but are not drilling on? Why are we not hearing more about the oil companies and their obscene profits? Why are we not hearing more about additional oil refineries not being built in the last 10 years? In response to typical white person who stated "the Chinese are drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, why don't we?" WE ARE. The conservative talking heads just like to leave that out when they are conditioning your brain.

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  19. Fordy

    I guess a lot of families and businesses are linked to big oil. In that regard I'm not supised.

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  20. Susan

    Was it only Republicans that were polled?

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  21. ProudToBeDemocrat

    why are the republicans talking about drilling now, they had 8 years to do it under the bush admistration they failed to do it, also there is a lot of places available for drilling, but no body seens to do it. This is a political game from republians. Why did Bush say at one time America is addicted to oil. Bush and the republicans have a lot to lose if we stop using Oil and use other methods most of the oil profit goes the the conservative rich republicans wake up America.

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  22. James L.

    Oil has had a good run. It served it's purpose for a time, but at a cost. It's ruined our atmosphere with it's polution and hurt us all in record prices. This country need's to break free of the grasp of oil. More off-shore drilling will just continue the old way's. We need to move on and change our way of thinking. The future is alternative fuels.

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  23. BHO Not my candidate

    Oil prices are based off of Future Supply... not just present supply... obviously drilling more oil would increase the future supply and would lead oil prices lower, also it would help our trade deficit immensly,...

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  24. tony

    By the way–
    CNN is not on the Repiblican side–
    These polls -are both evenly distributed between Reps and Dems–
    It's people like Al & Abby that have no clue–They are already drilling of our shores-
    Cuba will be shortl also-
    The reason you can't see the rigs is because they are far out–
    Your beautiful shores can be maintained–
    TOny

    July 30, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  25. democrat voting Republican in Nov.

    Why does the majority of americans say its time to drill oil and Nancy Pelosi seems to think she knows more than the american people and refuse to listen to us. I will be voting for McCain in Nov. and I have voted for our democratic congressman for several years. But this year i'm trying to put a Republican representative in congress for the 5t'h congressional district of Alabama. A vote for a Democrat is a vote for Nancy Pelosi and I'm tired of her and so is america that's the kind of change I want one that will listen to the american people

    July 30, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
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