June 22nd, 2008
02:30 PM ET
13 years ago

Richardson: 'You can't drill your way out of the problem'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/22/art.richardson.ap.jpg caption="New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson."]
(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama supporter Gov. Bill Richardson, D-New Mexico, attacked Sen. John McCain’s stance on offshore drilling on Sunday, calling the Arizona senator’s plan “cosmetic steps.”

“The point is that we have got to have a bipartisan comprehensive strategy and this administration, it seems Senator McCain, all they want to do is drill, drill, drill,” the former Democratic candidate told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “You can't drill your way out of the problem.”

Democrats have criticized the presumptive Republican nominee for his apparent “flip-flop” on the issue of offshore drilling. The McCain camp denies that he’s changed his position, arguing that he has always supported a state’s right to choose what happens in its coastal waters. Aides said recently that the senator voted to uphold the federal ban on ocean drilling in 2000 as a way of supporting states’ rights.

Throughout his appearance on Late Edition, Richardson frequently linked McCain’s proposal to the plan put forth by President Bush.

“The Bush administration has waited eight years to pressure OPEC and their great friends, the Saudis. When President Bush came in, he said he was going to jawbone OPEC to increase production,” the governor stated. “What is needed is not what the president and John McCain want to do, which is drill offshore. What is needed is a comprehensive strategy of fuel efficiency, 50 miles-per-gallon vehicles… mass transit. What is needed is investments in renewable energy and solar and wind,” he said.

Richardson is the latest in a string of Democrats to slam McCain’s solution for lowering gas prices. On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada called it a “cynical campaign ploy” and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, said: “It is so hard to tell what Sen. McCain’s positions are because they change so rapidly… [This] is certainly not the position he had just six months ago.”

soundoff (170 Responses)
  1. PMuffet

    The only answer is alternative fuels, fuel efficient modes of transportation and consumer behavior modification. Drilling holes in the earth for oil will take another 10-15 years. By then, gas could be as high as 20.00 a gallon. Open your narrow eyes folks!

    June 22, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  2. JASON

    National energy policy should actually be secondary in this argument; states' rights should be the primary consideration. After all, it is the coastal states themselves who will have to deal with the environmental consequences of offshore drilling.

    June 22, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  3. DM, Arlington TX

    The only way to fix this problem is to requirer higher gas mileage out of our cars and trucks. Allow for different types of alternative fuels to be developed.....

    June 22, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  4. Monica for Obama in Indiana

    Talking about "you can't teach an old dog new tricks" that's McCain,
    All he knows how to do is flip-flop

    Pooor McCain! pray for him

    Go get um! Obama

    June 22, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  5. seah ohio

    I know the price of Gas would not be this high, If Obama would not of turn the country against bush and the government. Obama would not of Ran his mouth and told the people and the world that America was so bad off (from the first day of his campaign before it was). Obama talking about ending trade pacts. Obama has torn the country apart and has shredded the Democratic party.

    Almost like he has the economy playing into his hands.

    Either way he has used and abused the people..

    He refuses to help the people, he just talks and talks and walks around in circles. He hasn't showed up for work for so long and when he does it is most present so he does not have to take a stand.

    Any effort by anyone to boost Americans spirits and even a cosmetic attempt to send message to the world, Is far better then the way Obama keeps causing decent and destroying.

    June 22, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  6. Obama: Carter's 2nd Term

    “The point is that we have got to have a bipartisan comprehensive strategy and this administration, it seems Senator McCain, all they want to do is drill, drill, drill,"?????? Does he even know what McCain said or did he like many others only hear drilling. As McCain said drill is part of the answer. Drilling is not bad and for people that look at facts instead of act like eco-sheep see that.

    June 22, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  7. Franky

    As a matter of fact, I don't know even know if there's a Republican running, LOL!!! Ohhh and Senator McCain, like I said, the cash baby!! The cash!!! LOL!!!

    June 22, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  8. Obama: Carter's 2nd Term

    Many of the Obama backers state polls where people want out of Iraq but what about the polls out this week that have 3/4 people saying to drill? To those that say it does not matter what the polls show than you better not use them to try to make a point about the war.

    June 22, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  9. girlscoutnut

    Drilling is step one and not one expects it to resolve anthing except "speculative markets". Alternative energy and agressive consumer sacrifice is also needed. If Richardson had any smarts he would examine more closely where the Republicans are going with this and many Democratics for that matter.

    June 22, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  10. I Used To Be A Democrat

    It is so sad to see Democrats on the wrong side of this issue. They want higher gas prices. Its obvious. Obama says his gonna raise taxes on oil which means higher gas prices. Democrats are dead wrong on this issue and its going to haunt them for the rest of the year.

    Not only do we need domestic drilling, but the people are demanding it. If we don't do it, in ten years gas prices will be double what they are today.

    June 22, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  11. Texas Trail Dog

    I'll agree with you on that Gov. Richardson. Our immediate problem is not making Iraq turn loose some of the 2.5 million barrels of oil they're pumping per day in our direction. After all for the price of freedom they now have wouldn't you think they owe us. Furthermore we do need to continue oil exploration in whatever means necessary to secure our future. Of course in a secure manner as to not destroy nature or its habitats. BUT YOU ARE BACKING THE WRONG MAN TO GET THIS DONE. ALSO YOU WILL SOON REALIZE THE MAN LIED TO YOU ALOS. HE HAS NO INTENTION OF HELPING THE ILLEGALS. SO YOU HAVE LOST FRIENDS AND WASTED YOUR TIME WITH THE SKUNK.

    June 22, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  12. vixtor


    June 22, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  13. Charlotte

    Who cares what this Judas thinks? All they know, is to link McCain to Bush. What are their plans? They rely on citing everybody elses solutions withtout ever stating their own. They say they have a stragity, what is it?

    June 22, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  14. Marie in California

    Right now, we need ALL possible solutions to the energy problem, which includes drilling for short term needs and to decrease dependence on foreign oil....while we simultaneously develop renewable energy sources and decrease energy use by more fuel efficient vehices, driving less, etc. etc. etc.

    I'm with McCain on this one, including lowering gas prices for temporary relief, especially for truckers, farmers, and other people who depend on petroleum products for their livelihood. Not a solution, but definitely a respite.

    June 22, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |

    Why is this guy even being interviewed?

    We should, for environmental reasons alone, NOT drill... But, the problem at hand is that if we don't, the Russians or Saudi's will.

    Not only do we need to make sure it does not happen, we need to ensure that nobody else can do it either.

    And... Why is this guy even being interviewed?

    June 22, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  16. randy

    Gov bill richardson, is right because it will take on on long time before american people start seeing the benefit of the offsore oil drilling 20 years at most. But we as on on country need is on on saolution for now.this once again show how macain keep flip flopping on this issues

    June 22, 2008 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  17. time4change08

    I dont understand why McCain is trying to side with drilling more, Its obvious gas isnt going to ever come down, its obvious gas will only continue to rise like everything else in our society. What we need are plans to use less, find other sources of energy. Our only way to see an impact at the pumps by drilling wont be until 5-10 years down line but we cant wait until then we need new policies on regards of funding other sources of energy. It will never stop gasoline will be 15 dollars a gallon. We dont need more drilling because by time we finally see those "Millions of Gallons" offshore gasoline will already be 10 dollars a gallon.

    Thanks Mr Bush Instead of spending those billions of dollars in IRAQ we could have been spending that money on educating our children on other sources of energy, or Investing it into other sources of energy istead of trying to liberate a entire nation only to allow Iran to take a stronghold and have barrels of oil skyrocket to 134 dollars a barrel.

    June 22, 2008 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  18. Schalaine Ellisor

    I do not believe drilling for additional oil is the direction our country wants to go. You can't even argue more drilling will decrease the price I'm paying at the pump. The argument the threat of more driling will cause the price to fall is ridiculous!! McCain you and the Bush oil boys might as well give it up. There is no way our country will take a step backwards. We have all bought into the vision that Barack has for our country. Notice I said vision, not bandaide.

    June 22, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  19. Jan From Boca Raton, Fl.

    Look who's talking "Judas" Richardson.This guy looks like a drug dealer from Mexico.

    June 22, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  20. randy

    Well john he is more of on on flip flopper than the republicans accused kerry in 04.

    June 22, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  21. randy

    Gov bill richardson is correct.

    June 22, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  22. Jody

    You can't complain, blame and promise your way out of a problem either. Yet, all Obama does is complain about how messed up our country is and blame everyone else for the problems. He NEVER provide SPECIFICS about what he will DO. Just a bunch of promises that he's "different".

    He just complains, blames and promises.

    June 22, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  23. mike

    yes! Mccian wants to drill and make the oil companies more money so he can get smoll percentage of it. McBush flip flop flip flop flip flop ooooo hold on i am going to FLIP now.

    June 22, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  24. aware

    Give us a break Richardson! Spewing the Obama obfuscations just reinforce your ineptitude and his! 🙁

    There are many pieces to this issue and drilling is one of them. Let's begin to do something other than trying to defame McCain! 🙁

    June 22, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  25. Alston

    Spot on Bill..

    America wants to be a world leader in technology.. that won't be achieved by pursuing petroleum based energy sources.

    Wish some of the rednecks voting for McCain would see that..

    June 22, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
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