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-- -- oil hovering around -- 134 dollars a barrel and gas selling for more than four dollars a gallon.
Both senators Barack Obama and John McCain understand that the energy crisis is a major priority for voters come November.
That's why both candidates for the White House have been rolling out there and pension plans in recent days.
So we thought we take a look at the brains behind their energy plans.
First up senator Barack Obama he has some interesting people in his brain -- Jason -- -- the executive director of the national commission on energy policy.
Daniel ST -- environmental law professor who worked for the EPA -- Environmental Protection Agency ironically under the first President Bush.
And now that former vice president Al Gore has endorsed Obama -- -- safe -- to assume that he will also be advising Obama on green issues.
-- Republican Senator John McCain he has a stable of experts advising him on energy issues as well.
Former CIA director James -- seat former Virginia senator George Allen.
And senior policy advisor Douglas Holtz speak and well for a closer look at what's going on in the candidates brains regarding energy and -- for -- I'm joined by one teen brain member.
Douglas -- -- who joins me now when he comes just.
McCain headquarters in Arlington Virginia after -- biggest speech last night good morning.
Morning -- this hour.
I'm great you know it's it's good to see -- -- -- out with his big policy planning yesterday.
One thing is that also happening is that lets be honest your boss Senator John McCain.
One out coming -- pretty tough on Obama at one of the things he talked about was the tax on the big energy companies.
Suggesting that we're living back in the Carter administration once again.
What's wrong with the concept of taxing the oil companies were making billions of dollars and what.
What would you suggest is a better solution.
Well there's nothing about a windfall profit tax that water lower prices or increase supply and those are America's problems.
It's fine to have a political stance where you beat up on an easy target but.
Senator McCain's -- real solutions.
He wants to change the course of America's energy policy.
We've had a bipartisan failure for thirty years so it's hard to mention person running for president saying I want to be more dependent.
On imported oil but that's what we've done.
So he set out last night to get a dialogue with the American people.
To speak honestly about the energy problems in the challenges we face our national security issues are economic issues the environmental issues.
And to move forward in a way that finds us without the strategic exposure to imported oil.
Okay all sounds great on paper but how do you find it you know the one thing that Obama's talking about.
Is is finding a way to raise funds to use that money toward war energy research or toward finding -- -- more oil or alternatives.
I didn't find need the cash flow to do that.
The first thing you wanna do is make sure you use the resources we have.
In the short run there is no reason not to use exploration in the United States is the first step Sen McCain said yesterday.
He wants to set up a process by which we could.
Drill and explore the outer continental shelf where states feels appropriate.
We can expand the world's supply of oil take pressure off prices move that futures market a little bit.
Past that the major challenge is to use our -- it's our most abundant energy source the senators committed.
As a matter of using our energy and getting the Chinese on board because they have a lot of coal to finding ways to use coal safely and cleanly.
All right let me ask you this question -- you know -- -- things he talked about terms of offshore drilling -- -- you and I both know he's been very much opposed AMR continues to be opposed to it.
But -- one of the things he talked about -- that he would favor giving states.
Tangible financial rewards for granting offshore access.
What are those rewards and who's gonna fund that offshore drilling.
That the private sector -- always been the engine of economic growth will be the engine in offshore drilling as well.
If you look back to the deal that was made to allow golf.
You can -- -- exploration off Louisiana Louisiana got a share of the royalties for those leases that's a good model for things going forward.
I -- you know there's a lot of posturing going on or suggestions of posturing going on between the two camps you and I both know it very well.
What do you do in the immediate term to curb this because offshore drilling on paper sounds great.
But in reality you know it's not it's gonna take many many years 5710.
Years actually produce that oil.
What do you do in the short term to suggest to Americans across this country.
Think you're gonna fix the problems sooner rather than later because later -- prices may be trading at sixty dollars a barrel.
-- the senator proposed a gas tax holiday you know take a little pressure off American families for this summer.
-- -- truckers say 600 dollars a month in his diesel bill.
But and then this is an important step to come out in favor of domestic exploration send this signal.
To the world market that the United States will not be reliance on imported oil.
Send that the signal to the futures market that we're gonna see additional supplies not.
Necessarily an upward -- -- prices.
And make a commitment.
Too strong economic policies that'll strengthen the dollar.
Which is really feeding into you know the oil prices and an inflation the United States the senators package is a comprehensive approach which will deal with the energy problems.
Keep the economy growing and give Americans a job and reasonable prices.
All right we'll leave it there Douglas Holtz Aiken it was great seeing you once again thanks much for joining us.
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