June 16th, 2007
11:37 AM ET
9 years ago

Democrats: Motorists deserve more fuel efficient cars

Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Washington, delivered the Democratic response Saturday

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A Democratic senator said a new energy plan backed by both Democrats and Republicans is sorely needed in the United States, where motorists face a summer of dramatic hikes in gas prices.

"All it takes is one trip to the gas station to know Americans face an energy crisis," said Maria Cantwell of Washington state in the weekly Democratic radio address.

"Congress needs to take America's hope about a clean energy plan and turn it into a reality."

Cantwell, who decried American dependence on foreign oil, supports a more centralized energy plan that would reduce the cost of fuel. Such a plan, she believes, would preserve thousands of U.S. jobs and support small businesses hurt by rising fuel costs.

Congressional lawmakers began debating energy legislation this week.

Senate Democrats are working on what they call a "bipartisan" energy measure with positive environmental and economic benefits. The Senate bill, and a similar measure in the House, would force automakers to increase the fuel economy of their cars and light trucks.

Cantwell voiced her party's support for President Bush's call for a better energy policy, and urged the public to influence Bush and members of the Republican Party to vote for a bipartisan bill.

Filed under: President Bush • Senate
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Manny

    And this is supposed to be news ? And posted on the front page of your website ?!

    June 16, 2007 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  2. Bill W, Coatesville PA

    By all means – increase fuel efficiency. But this doesn't go far enough.

    Why are people allowed to drive things that don't even fit into a parking space anywhere, besides hogging gas like it doesn't cost anything and always wanting to do 90 mph in them, making them even less fuel efficient?

    Its one thing if a vehicle is farm equipment or needed for a construction site. But we really need to do away with all the un-necessary SUVs, Hummers, and monster trucks on the road, esecially all the ones that are never used for jobs, with one person in them carrying nothing. Put a $10,000 or $20,000 tax on these monsters that are such a nuisance. Make it really painful to buy these things without a real reason to have it.

    I have been driving a hybrid for 3 years now – and I love it. If more people drove smaller and more fuel efficient cars instead of monster vehicles they don't even need, we'd all be better off.

    June 16, 2007 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  3. Justin B. Miami, FL

    hear hear bill w.

    June 16, 2007 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  4. Steve, Kalamazoo, MI

    Well said Bill!

    June 16, 2007 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  5. J.Wheeler Nicholson

    Any legislator who denies a good energy plan to the people of this country can kiss her/his career goodbuy within the next couple of elections. It's time to fix this problem NOW! This is my key issue the next time I vote. Thanks

    June 16, 2007 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  6. mark worrell

    how about passing a LAW that the oil companies have to create a superfund for Alternative Fuel Development out of the trillions in profits we are giving these retail parasites during the current gouging

    every single person holding one or more terms should be voted out until these pocket stuffing theives (our congressmen, not to be confused with pocket stuffing oil executives) get the message

    June 16, 2007 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  7. Fabio Escobar, Amherst NY

    Here's how this dumb fuel efficiency plan will go: a hefty increase will be passed, leading to a few hundred or thousand more highway deaths per year. Then people will clamor for safer cars, and new laws will of course come along to accomplish that objective. The end result? Cars with an average price tag of 30,000 dollars.

    Mandates such as these will only increase the price of cars. If you think driving is expensive now because you're paying another $200 per year in gas, wait until your fancy new car costs an extra 5K-10K to account for Washington's mandates.

    Then again, Democrats would love this. It would be a short-term boon to auto unions, even if it would eventually bankrupt Detroit automakers. At that point, Democrats could sweep in and offer a few billion dollars in federal bailout money to "help the American working stiff."

    In the end, we get cars that are more expensive and less safe.

    June 16, 2007 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |


    June 17, 2007 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  9. Tom, Mission Viejo, CA

    The oil companies should have to fund research into alternative energy sources? And that ought to be LAW? I'd laugh if it weren't so sad.

    Oil companies are retail parasites? I guess Microsoft ought to have to give Apple some money, too. Oil companies are in business to make money, not for charity. Without the incentive of profit, who would go a drill for oil and spend Billions exploring for new sources of oil?

    Alternative Energy will come about when some company can turn that technology into a profit, like every other revolution beforehand.

    But you can't make a company do charity work, let's get real. Could we put pressure on the industry to increase refinery capacity, yes, if only the government would get out of the way, too. The energy 'crisis' isn't just about ugly big business but ugly big government, too.

    There is huge global demand for energy and we will have to pay more to get our piece of the pie.

    June 18, 2007 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  10. David Horne Estill, SC

    People can drive whatever car they can afford. There doesn't need to be any government restrictions. But maybe I would like to drive a Volkswagen Polo or Lupo that, for some reason, is not sold in America....build it and we will buy it!!!70-90mpg!

    December 26, 2007 11:55 am at 11:55 am |