It's so nice to see Republicans shilling for big oil and insisting that trying to move to other forms of energy is "ridiculous" but that's what we got from the head of the RNC, Reince Priebus, on Face the Nation this Sunday. And of course Priebus also trotted out the Republicans' "big lie" that Obama wants higher gas prices.
Elon Green over at Steve Benen's old blog, The Washington Monthly took that one on today after Mitt Romney repeated it on Fox News Sunday -- The Zombie Lie That Won't Die: Gas Prices Edition:
The claim that Obama consciously tried to hike the price of gas isn’t a new one. Last month, Mitch Daniels said the president “wanted higher gas prices, and he got them.” And earlier this month, a Fox News reporter was widely mocked, including by the president himself, for asking if Obama yearned for high has prices.
The Washington Post looked into the allegation (which, it’s worth noting, makes no sense whatsoever), and found that “the president never said he wanted the cost of gasoline to rise.”
What’s new, and immensely dispiriting, is that Romney — who, if nothing else, understands how the economy works — chose to pick up the mantle. The problem for him is he can’t very well acknowledge where the blame truly lies without eroding his support. If Romney calls out the oil speculators, he risks being labeled anti-capitalist, and if suggests ratcheting down the talk of attacking Iran, he will be labeled anti-Semitic.
The Washington Post also took on one of Priebus' other lies during this interview, which is that the building the Keystone pipeline will somehow lower the price of gas as well -- Will the Keystone XL pipeline lower gasoline prices?.
And Think Progress has more on Priebus' claim that the Keystone pipeline would create 20,000 jobs -- Myth That Keystone XL Creates Jobs Perpetuated By Oil Lobby, Parroted By Congress’s Oil Recipients:
Project advocates, who include Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, misrepresent its economic benefits to favor the oil industry, throwing out claims that Keystone XL creates “tens of thousands of jobs.”
However, studies conducted independently of TransCanada find much smaller jobs numbers, far from “tens of thousands.” An oil contractor hired by the State Department reported it would create between 5,000 and 6,000 temporary jobs, while an independent study by Cornell University found it would create only 500 to 1,400 temporary jobs. Once the costs of the increased pollution and risk of oil spills is factored in, Cornell found, the jobs impact is likely to be negative. The “118,000 spin-off jobs” number used by TransCanada received two Pinocchios from the Washington Post Fact Checker.
I'm also not sure how building a pipeline for Canadian oil which will end up on the world oil market would "get us a step closer to energy independence" but Schieffer let Priebus get away with that one as well. Schieffer for his part did at least challenge Priebus on the fact that Republicans were the ones that actually killed the pipeline by rushing the approval date, but after Priebus lied in response he didn't challenge him and just moved on to the next topic. But that's par for the course with these Sunday shows where Republicans are regularly allowed to lie with impunity and are seldom taken to task for it, with Schieffer being one of the worst offenders.
Transcript below the fold.
Continue reading »