DeMint blasts president on Strategic Petroleum Reserve
June 24th, 2011
01:57 PM ET
7 years ago

DeMint blasts president on Strategic Petroleum Reserve

(CNN) - Sen. Jim DeMint slammed President Barack Obama's order Thursday to withdraw 30 million barrels of oil from the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The president's decision, while applauded by Democrats, drew criticism from top Republicans who said the reserve should be used for emergencies only–not price reduction.

"He's trying to be the wizard behind the curtain in 'The Wizard of Oz.' He's trying to control our economy from Washington. That's not how it works," the South Carolina Republican said in an interview with CNN's Candy Crowley, chief political correspondent and anchor of "State of the Union."

The release will take place over 30 days, injecting a supply of oil into a market strained by ongoing unrest in Libya and the Middle East. But DeMint argued Obama's plan to tap into the reserve is ill-fated.

"Instead of going after our own oil, our own energy, our own natural gas, the president has made it very difficult, really costing us tens of thousands of jobs. Now we're going to come - come into the Strategic Reserve to - to try to essentially manage oil prices," DeMint said.

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Filed under: Energy • Jim DeMint • President Obama • TV-State of the Union
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    wow 3 stories in a row where the president gets SLAMMED! I think news would be the GOP supporting something Obama does, being critical is NOT really news.

    June 24, 2011 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  2. thomas

    Sen. Jim DeMint must have lost money in the oil futures market , well thats what you get when you bank on speculation at the consumers expense !

    Good Job Mr , President !

    June 24, 2011 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  3. Moby49

    This guy is a full on............ well my mother told me if you can't say somthing nice don't say anything so...................

    June 24, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  4. Andrew

    For hurting American families, $4.50/gallon gas is an emergency.
    I wouldn't expect the GOP to understand what people without millions of dollars are going through.

    June 24, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  5. Clwyd

    Wait! Just a month ago the repulican'ts were talking about the release of oil. Oh, I forgot they always say "NO" when it comes to the president. Why didn't they do that when we had the bushwhacker in office? Republicans are all animals!

    June 24, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  6. Greg in Arkansas

    Wonder how many GOP'ers got caught with OIL trading options when the price dropped, besides, can't have the economy getting better until AFTER the next election...."He's trying to control our economy from Washington" they complain TODAY but yesterday, it was "Obama is not doing enough to help the economy".....GIVE ME A BREAK.......

    June 24, 2011 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  7. sonny chapman

    I don't think Obama could kiss his daughters good night in a manner that would satisfy Jim Demint.

    June 24, 2011 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  8. ConservaFASCISTS

    When disruption in the market is being fueled by the crisis in Libya and the entire region, I would could call that an emergency Sen. Demented.

    June 24, 2011 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    Seeing how we are not going to let us use it for national defense, why not use it keep costs down? BTW, Senator, how does tapping into the reserve cost any jobs, much less "tens of thousands" of jobs? Just because you said, I know it isn't true. "You lie."

    June 24, 2011 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  10. Boytjie

    But when Bush did the same thing it was OK?

    June 24, 2011 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  11. SecedingfromTexas

    Wouldn't it be nice if these do-nothing Teacans could say something decent about anything. Just look at the
    headlines of these Ticker posts:
    "House set to rebuke Obama.."
    "GOP slams Obama..{
    "Demint blasts President..."
    If these people, and frankly, Pain is at the top of the list, could or would put the same demands on themselves as they
    put on President Obama, and act in a way that shows decency, respect, and a true desire to help solve
    America's problems, we would be a lot farther along than we are. These constant idiotic roadblocks,
    name calling, hypocritical flip-flopping is getting very tiring. They were for "mandated health insurance" before they
    were not, they raised the debt limit ceiling EVERY year GW Bush was in office (that would be 8 times) now they
    won't, and the best I can say about their insistance on the "Bush tax cuts" is to quote a true genius:
    "Stupidity is doing the same thing over and over and expectinig different results" – Einstein.
    These people have proven they are no Einsteins.

    June 24, 2011 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  12. Rudy NYC

    "He's trying to control our economy from Washington. That's not how it works."
    Interesting choice of words, Mr. Senator. So why do you and your colleagues continue to blame the President for turning the economy around? Hmm?

    June 24, 2011 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  13. vic , nashville ,tn

    De Mint gave full support to candidate Christine O’Donnell so do the math his opinion useless
    I wish CNN play his comments beginning of state of the union then I can have 10 min more sleep

    June 24, 2011 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. Texas Doc

    He should spend less time having his hair dyed and more time out on the street where the rest of us are paying through the nose for gas. Does he honestly think we should just suck it up and pay more? My guess is yes, becuase his whole party (GOP/Tea Party) is bankrolled by big oil.

    June 24, 2011 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  15. junk

    I don't recall this theocrat having anything to say when Bush played with the strategic reserve. Double standard much?

    June 24, 2011 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  16. Ken in NC

    Jim DeMint needs to go get back on his meds. The US has granted more drilling permits this year than the first 3 years of the Obama Administraton combined and there was in fact, an article just this week about how there are so many oil leases sitting with permits that the oil companies are not drilling. The problem is not the US. The problem is the oil companies. They get the permits and leases and then they let them sit. DeMint needs to crawl back under that Republican rock he came from.

    June 24, 2011 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  17. jon

    Of course the party of no is against it. It may actually lower the cost at the pump for taxpayers while lowering the asinine profits of big oil a little.

    June 24, 2011 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  18. Republicans - The "Not Intended To Be Factually Accurate" Party

    He's the President Mr. Demint, you are not. It's his call. I support him.

    Oil companies have 100's [if not 1000's] of leases that they could be drilling right now but they refuse to do so. And still, so-called "Free Market" supporters like you endorse transferring wealth from the US taxpayer – in the form of oil subsidies – to this enormously profitable industry.

    I'll bet you've never aggreed with the President on anything. I'll bet when gas hit $4 a gallion, you were using it in your attacks against the President's "handling" of the economy, weren't you? I'll bet when he called for increased car & pickup truck MPG standards, you called him a socialist, didn't you.

    You fail to realize that the 15% increase in highway MPG means 15% less oil imported each day. We use about 19 million bbls of oil PER DAY in America. We use 9 million bbls of GASOLINE per day. So by raising CAFE standards, Obama has effectively saved us about 1 MILLION BARRELS PER DAY.

    How many wells would it take to equal that - and how long would it take to feel that increase, Mr. DeMint? I'll tell you since you don't know. Wells begun today won't produce oil for 5 to 8 years.

    The President's action regarding the Strategic Petroleum reserve is clearly one of the biggest levers he could pull to have the fastest impact possible.

    June 24, 2011 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  19. Scott

    Gee...I sure wish you guys would make up you mind. First, you say the high gas prices are Obama's fault and that he's not doing enough to help the economy, but when he decides to release some oil from the reserves in order to quite the speculators, which in turn will bring gas prices down, you complain that he's trying to "control the economy."

    June 24, 2011 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  20. C. Howe Yulikit

    And if Obama announced that he wasn't releasing oil from the reserve they would attack him for that. The GOP is useless.

    June 24, 2011 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  21. The Real Tom Paine

    Who is the wizard controlling you, Mr. DeMint?

    Even if we were to commence drilling in every possible area, regardless of cost, safety, and evironmental impact, it would not change anything for years, and would never meet our needs. Would Mr. DeMint prefer us to remain at the mercy of the Saudis, Venezuela, and other enemies who have manipulated our dependence on a mineral slime refined with a 19th century technology? Every attempt the president has made to wean us off foreign oil and adopt new techologies has been stymied by those who say no for selfish reasons. The Kochs and their ilk have been the wizards behind the curtain, manipulating DeMint and others into keeping us trapped in the delusion that all we have to do is keep drilling: has he factored in the operational cost of this? No. Who do you suppose will pay for their exploration? We will. Can we set up platforms off of Myrtle Beach? Not as long as Jim DeMint is in the Senate. He is blowing smoke as usual, and the GOP/TP acolytes are all nodding their heads in unison, like the robots they are, because they swallow every idiotic arguement put forward by DeMint and the rest of the Republibots.

    June 24, 2011 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  22. Yikes!

    I'm pretty sure that these are the same idiots that were calling for releasing the petrolium reserves when the prices went up.

    June 24, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  23. The Greedy Old Pigs ahve lost their minds

    DeMented is so wrong so many different ways it's hard to know where to start labelling all of that lying liar's lies. First, though, "Drill here, drill now" is stupid, again for so many reasons the teatard cultists can't seem to understand. We already are drilling and many areas have been leased but not explored, so adding more won't do anything. Second, a resource that only gets more valuable over time should be saved for later when it's worth more. Third, DeMented and his cultist crony looking out for filthy rich oil companies and billionaires in general refuses to subsidize green energy, which would ultimately reduce the need for oil and lower gas prices.

    It is intellectually bankrupt GOBPbaggers like DeMent that will be the downfall of the Greedy Old Pigs. Unfortunately, in their class war on the poor and middle class of America, they may very well take us all down with them.

    June 24, 2011 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  24. AEK

    I am shocked and surprised that the Republicans would come down on the side of the wealthy oil and gas speculators and not on the side of the average American citizen paying an excessive amount for gasoline!

    June 24, 2011 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |

    Standard GOP tactics. They offer criticism if the President doesn't do something and then criticism him if he does do something. It should be obvious to anyone with half a brain that the GOP doesn't care at all about the country, just playing politics against the President. The GOP flat out does not care about the American people and anyone who would vote for another republican for any office is a complete idiot.

    June 24, 2011 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
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