By Elaine Donnelly
Extending sexual misconduct to combat units
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Interior Secretary Kenneth L. Salazar's resignation doesn't just leave another open spot in President Obama's Cabinet. The departure of the former senator from Colorado could have far-reaching effects on the administration's energy and environmental policies in a second term — particularly oil and gas drilling on federal lands.
Oil and gas industry leaders are urging President Obama to forgo tax increases in his second term and instead embrace more domestic energy production as a way to jump-start the economy and create jobs.
With a second term now in hand, President Obama no longer can delay a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline and must either side with environmentalists within his party or greenlight a major step toward North American energy independence.
In January 2009, when President Obama was sworn in, a gallon of regular gasoline cost $1.68. Today, it's more than double that, reaching $5 in parts of California and $6 just outside Disney World in Florida.
The clock is ticking on the Keystone XL pipeline.
Taking the handcuffs off the oil and gas industry would put more than a million Americans to work in the next seven years and make an $800 billion dent in the national debt by 2030, according to a new study released Wednesday.
As the economic recovery stalls and the debt debate in Washington fuels market uncertainty, business leaders — many of whom were once close to the White House — are increasingly airing their fears that President Obama's policies are stifling job creation.
Despite President Obama's pledge to cut red tape for job-creating industries, regulations and other delays are holding up billions of dollars in investments and thousands of jobs for oil and gas producers, the head of the American Petroleum Institute tells The Washington Times.
Former Illinois Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich has asked a judge to nullify the lone conviction in his mostly deadlocked corruption trial, saying the jury's decision was underpinned by errors at trial and misconduct by prosecutors.
"I can't tell you who the new secretary will be, but we look forward to working with his successor as we address fundamental policy questions," said Jack Gerard, president of the American Petroleum Institute. "What will our future be? Will we get it right? Will we indeed take advantage of this historic game-changing opportunity [in American energy]? It's important to look at the federal lands question in that context."
"America's newfound abundance of natural gas resources is a boon to all domestic manufacturing through lower energy costs, lower costs on raw materials and reduced heating bills," he said. "Restricting exports of energy makes no more sense than unnecessarily restricting the export of chemicals, agriculture products or cars, and such a backward move could violate international trade rules."