CBS' Reid didn't note that experts, including Energy Dept., have rebutted assertion that expanded offshore drilling "will bring prices down"July 29, 2008 1:36 PM EDT ››› JEREMY HOLDEN
During the July 28 edition of the CBS Evening News, correspondent Chip Reid stated, "[Sen. John] McCain says he now supports increased offshore drilling, as do 73 percent of Americans, because, he says, more oil supplies will bring prices down." After airing McCain's attack on Sen. Barack Obama for opposing efforts to lift a congressional moratorium on certain off-shore drilling, Reid went on to claim, "Obama says offshore drilling harms the environment, and looks to the past, not the future." But Reid provided no indication that, beyond simply expressing concern that offshore drilling "harms the environment," Obama has directly rebutted the suggestion that "increased offshore oil drilling ... will bring prices down," by pointing to the conclusion of "most experts, even within the Bush Administration," that doing so would not affect gas prices for many years. Reid did not note either that Obama had rebutted the suggestion that offshore drilling "will bring prices down" anytime soon or that the Department of Energy has done so as well.
After President Bush lifted the presidential moratorium on certain offshore drilling on July 14, Obama issued a statement that read, "If offshore drilling would provide short-term relief at the pump or a long-term strategy for energy independence, it would be worthy of our consideration, regardless of the risks. But most experts, even within the Bush Administration, concede it would do neither." Indeed, as Media Matters for America has repeatedly documented, in 2007, the U.S. Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration (EIA) considered the likely effects of allowing the congressional and executive moratoriums on certain off-shore drilling to expire in 2012 and estimated that access to offshore areas currently off limits "would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030."
From the July 28 edition of the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric:
REID: As important as jobs and taxes are, polls show it's the price of gas that really gets voters mad. That's where McCain kept his focus today, as he toured an oil field in California.
McCAIN [video clip]: So offshore drilling -- drilling is something we have to do.
REID: McCain says he now supports increased offshore drilling, as do 73 percent of Americans, because, he says, more oil supplies will bring prices down. He says it's time for Obama to get on board.
McCAIN [video clip]: He is the Dr. No of the -- America's energy future.
REID: But Obama says offshore drilling harms the environment, and looks to the past, not the future.
OBAMA [video clip]: If we had made investments in alternative energy and fuel efficiency, we'd be less vulnerable to price shocks.
REID: So from gas prices to the housing crisis to the deficit, there are now so many economic challenges confronting the nation that, as one key senator put it today, whoever is the next president will have a very, very sobering first week -- Katie.