WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) today released the following statement on the Energy Bill. Today, the Senate failed to stop a Republican filibuster of the bill; the cloture vote failed to meet the 60 vote requirement by 53-42:
“Once again, partisan, special interest-driven politics have blocked the bold steps necessary to solve our energy crisis. The Energy Bill that was rejected today would have improved the fuel economy of cars and trucks to an average of 35 mpg and provided 36 billion gallons of biofuels in 15 years. It would have repealed $13 billion in subsidies for the oil and gas industry at a time when the price of oil nears $100 a barrel. And it would have included provisions to make solar and wind power more affordable and widespread to homeowners and businesses.
“This bill also recognized those family farmers and local ethanol producers across the country who have grown the ethanol industry from the ground up. By expanding the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) to 36 billion gallons by 2022, this bill would have helped stabilize the ethanol market and improve declining ethanol prices that are threatening the livelihood of farmers and ethanol managers as well as the rural economy. Senator Harkin and I fought to expand the RFS to continue the path of developing a strong biofuels industry, and I will continue to work to make sure an RFS expansion happens as quickly as possible.
“For too long the interests of the American people have fallen victim to partisan politics, and today serves as another unfortunate example. This bill put the American people and our energy future ahead of Big Oil, and it deserved to be considered. I will continue to support any efforts to bring this bill back to the floor."