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Press Release

Nation's Largest Taxpayer Group Praises Bush Decision to Lift Offshore Drilling Ban

For Immediate Release July 14, 2008
Pete Sepp, (703) 683-5700

(Alexandria, Va.) -- With fuel averaging more than $4 per gallon and food prices rising nationwide, American families need any relief available to combat skyrocketing energy costs. That's why the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU) applauded President Bush's decision today to lift the executive order that bans searching for energy off the country's shores -- a move that could make available more than 80 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

"President Bush deserves praise for taking this necessary step toward energy security and lower prices," NTU Government Affairs Manager Andrew Moylan said. "Accessing our vast offshore oil and natural gas resources can help ease supply shortages and bring down high energy prices in the future."

Although pundits already have labeled the President's decision as largely "symbolic" due to a similar Congressional moratorium on offshore drilling, Moylan noted that lawmakers can and should follow suit to lift their own ban instead of drafting energy legislation centered on increased subsidies, taxes, and regulations.

"The pressure is now on Congress to stop stonewalling domestic production," he said. "Though the President's action was important, exploration cannot begin until Congress removes its restrictions. Americans should contact their representatives and urge them to follow the President's lead on this critical issue."

Allowing domestic energy exploration won't exponentially increase the nation's oil resources overnight, but it will help calm market volatility by ensuring a steady stream of supply in the future to keep pace with global demand, according to Moylan. He added that, despite claims to the contrary, offshore drilling is possible without creating significant environmental hazards.

"American families cannot afford any missed opportunities to lower energy prices," Moylan concluded. "Many factors that determine these prices are beyond the federal government's control, but ending these costly restrictions isn't one of them. Congress should act now."

NTU is a nonpartisan, nonprofit citizen organization founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes, smaller government, and economic freedom at all levels. Note: For more information on NTU's energy policy, visit