Research

The President Forgets The Facts

Obama’s “Remember” Campaign Ad Takes Credit For His Predecessor’s Actions And Flunks Basic Math

OBAMA IS CLAIMING CREDIT FOR RISING DOMESTIC OIL PRODUCTION THAT HAS OCCURRED IN SPITE OF HIS POLICIES

Obama Ad: “Under President Obama, Domestic Oil Production Is At An 8-Year High …” (Obama For America, “Remember,” 4/2/12)

FACT CHECK: Almost All The Increase In Drilling Has Come From Non-Federal Lands, While Production On Federal Lands Under Obama Has Fallen:

“The Reality Is That Most Of The Increase In U.S. Oil And Gas Production Has Come Despite The Obama Administration.” (Editorial, “‘Stupid’ And Oil Prices,” The Wall Street Journal, 2/27/12)

“He Doesn’t Want To Admit It, But President Obama Is Taking Credit For Something George W. Bush Did. The White House Is Touting Federal Data That Shows Domestic Oil Production Is At Its Highest Level Since 2003.” (Amy Harder, “Obama’s Fuzzy Oil Production Math,” National Journal, 3/17/11) 

  • For 2009 And 2010, Oil Production Numbers Are Due To Actions Taken Before Obama Became President, Especially Since He Didn’t Take Any Major Action To Expand Offshore Drilling In His First Year. “While Bush was in office from 2001 to 2009, the oil and gas industry saw many new leases and other expanded drilling opportunities. In March 2010, Obama announced plans to expand offshore drilling, but he retreated in the aftermath of the BP oil spill. According to EIA’s short-term 2011 outlook, released last week, oil production was significantly higher in 2009 than in the years prior. Obama may have been in office for most of that year, but the oil production numbers are due to action taken before he became president. In 2010, most if not all of the production increase recorded is likely due to action that predates Obama, since Obama didn’t take any major action expanding offshore drilling his first year in office.” (Amy Harder, “Obama’s Fuzzy Oil Production Math,” National Journal, 3/17/11)

 “Much Of That Drilling Is Taking Place Due To Leases Finalized During The George W. Bush Administration…” “What Obama fails to mention, and Republicans want to spotlight, is that much of that drilling is taking place due to leases finalized during the George W. Bush administration, and much of it takes place on private land, with little action by the federal government.” (Coral Davenport, “Obama In Full Crisis-Control Mode On Gas Prices,” National Journal, 3/15/12)

Energy Production On Federally-Administered Lands Is Down Under Obama

“About 96% Of The Increase Since 2007 Took Place On Non-Federal Lands, But The Federal Share Of Total U.S. Production Only Fell By About Two Percentage Points.” (Marc Humphries, “U.S. Crude Oil Production In Federal And Non-Federal Areas,” Congressional Research Service, 3/20/12)

Politifact: Oil Production On Federal Lands Dropped 14 Percent In 2011. “In 2010, EIA data show, 726 million barrels of oil came from federal lands, including offshore wells. In 2011, it was 626. That’s a drop of 13.77 percent, which can be rounded to 14 percent.” (“Rob Portman Says Oil Production On Public Lands Was Down 14 Percent In 2011,” PolitiFact, 4/2/12)

  • Politifact: “There Was A 14 Percent Drop On Public Lands.” (“Rob Portman Says Oil Production On Public Lands Was Down 14 Percent In 2011,” PolitiFact, 4/2/12) 

While Domestic Oil Production Is At An All-Time High, Production On Federal Lands And Waters Dropped Significantly In 2011. “Domestic oil production may be at an all-time high nationwide, but the increase is primarily occurring on state and private lands rather than on federal land and waters, where production appears to have dropped significantly in 2011, according to the most recent government data.” (Phil Taylor, “Production On Federal Tracts Fell In 2011,” Greenwire, 2/27/12)

“Production Of Natural Gas On Public Lands And Waters In Fiscal 2011 Dropped 11 Percent From The Previous Year, According To Interior Department Data. Oil Production Dipped Nearly 14 Percent.” (Phil Taylor, “Production On Federal Tracts Fell In 2011,” Greenwire, 2/27/12)

  • “By Contrast, Oil Production On Public Lands Grew By About 4 Percent, While Gas Production Dipped Slightly.” (Phil Taylor, “Production On Federal Tracts Fell In 2011,” Greenwire, 2/27/12)

“The Reduction In Oil Production Was Most Significant In The Gulf Of Mexico, Where It Declined Nearly 17 Percent To 514 Million Barrels From 618 Million Barrels In 2010.” (Phil Taylor, “Production On Federal Tracts Fell In 2011,” Greenwire, 2/27/12)

Federal Land Produced Less Crude Oil In 2011 Than It Did In 2003. “The U.S. Energy Information Administration, the DOE entity which prepared the report, debunks Salazar’s claim that production is the highest its been in recent memory. The report shows that crude oil production and natural gas production on Federal lands both fell between 2010 and 2011. In fact, federal lands produced less crude oil in fiscal 2011 than they did in fiscal 2003. Natural gas production on federal land als fell between 2010 and 2011.” (Joel Gehrke, “DOE Report On Energy Contradicts WH, Salazar,” The Washington Examiner’s Beltway Confidential, 3/15/12)

OBAMA PLANS TO HIKE ENERGY TAXES WILL RAISE, NOT LOWER SKYROCKETING GAS PRICES AND IS OPPOSED BY FELLOW DEMOCRATS

Obama Ad: “Why Is Big Oil Attacking Him? Because He’s Fighting To End Their Tax Breaks.” (Obama For America, “Remember”, 4/2/12)

FACT CHECK: The White House Admits That Their Higher Energy Taxes Will Not Lower The Price Of Gas And The Congressional Research Service Says It Will Actually Cause Prices To Rise

Deputy Assistant To The President Heather Zichal In March 2012: “Correct” That The President Is Not Arguing That Increasing Energy Taxes Would Bring Down Gas Prices. QUESTION: “The President often says there’s no silver bullet to bring gas prices down in the short term, but he has called on Congress to get — do away with subsidies for oil and gas companies. Do you guys have some kind of estimate of how, if those subsidies were gone, it would affect prices at the pump? Or is it just a fairness issue” MS. ZICHAL: “I think, from our perspective, it’s a fairness issue. At this point in time, when we’re making difficult decisions about the budget and where to make investments and where to cut, the fact that oil and gas companies are bringing in record profits and at the same time getting $4 billion in subsidies annually, those subsidies should be repealed. And the President has called for that and I believe the Senate will be acting soon to vote on this issue as well.” Q: “And he’s not arguing that people would — there would be some kind of a connection between that and prices going down?” MS. ZICHAL: “Correct.” (The White House, Press Briefing, 3/12/12)

The Congressional Research Service Said That The Taxes Obama Wants To Raise “Would Make Oil And Natural Gas More Expensive For U.S. Consumers And Likely Increase Foreign Dependence.” “The Administration estimates that the tax changes outlined in the budget proposal would provide $22.8 billion in revenues over the period 2012 to 2016, and over $43.6 billion from 2012 to 2021. These changes, if enacted by Congress, also would reduce the tax advantage enjoyed by independent oil and natural gas companies over the major oil companies. On what would likely be a small scale, the proposals also would make oil and natural gas more expensive for U.S. consumers and likely increase foreign dependence.” (Robert Pirog, “Oil And Natural Gas Industry Tax Issues In The FY2012 Budget Proposal,” Congressional Research Service, 3/3/11)

Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) Admitted Raising Domestic Energy Production Taxes Would Not Lower Gas Prices. “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s attempt to raise taxes on U.S. oil companies Tuesday night would not have lowered the $4 price tag on a gallon of gasoline. I asked Mr. Reid if his legislation would lower the price at the pump, and Mr. Reid said no: ‘I think that it’s not going to have any effect on the price of gasoline.’ The Democratic leader said he wanted lower petrol prices, but he offered no concrete solutions. ‘Common sense dictates that this would do it … all I have are the quotes that it won’t increase the price of gasoline,’ he added, looking at his notes.”  (Emily Miller, “Reid: No Cheap Gas For You,” The Washington Times, 5/17/11)

  • Sen. Reid: “So This Is A Question Of Fairness And A Question Of Priorities. Certainly A Question Of Economics. But It Is Not A Question Of Gas Prices.” (Sen. Harry Reid, Remarks On The U.S. Senate Floor, Washington D.C., 5/16/11)

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) Acknowledged Legislation Increasing Energy Taxes Won’t Decrease The Price Of Gas. “New legislation unveiled Tuesday by Sens. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, would cut off immensely profitable companies like Shell Oil and Exxon Mobil from subsidies such as a deduction originally aimed at boosting manufacturing. The bill would also close a loophole that effectively allows oil companies to shield themselves from taxes by deducting royalties paid to foreign governments. Menendez acknowledged that the legislation – slated for a vote next week – won’t do anything about gas prices exceeding $4 a gallon in many places.” (Andrew Taylor, “Democrats Seek To Slash Subsidies For ‘Big Oil’,” The Associated Press, 5/10/11)

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY): “This Was Never Intended To Talk About Lowering Prices.” (CNN’s “The Situation Room,” 5/11/11)

Obama’s Call For Higher Taxes Faces Opposition From Senate Democrats

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) In 2012: “Wrong-Headed Approach That Pits Sectors Of The Energy Industry Against One Another In An Effort To Assign Blame For High Gas Prices.” LANDRIEU: “The bill from Sen. Menendez is a wrong-headed approach that pits sectors of the energy industry against one another in an effort to assign blame for high gas prices, instead of promoting the all of the above energy strategy our country needs. … I support alternative renewable energy, but the advance of this sector cannot come at the expense of the oil and gas industry that powers our nation and supports more than 9 million jobs in the United States and more than 375,000 in Louisiana.” (Bruce Alpert, “Senate To Vote On Bill To Eliminate Oil And Gas Tax Breaks,” The Times-Picayune, 3/26/12)

  • Landrieu In 2011: “I Have Said For Months That I Am Not Supporting A Repeal Of Tax Cuts For The Oil Industry Unless There Are Other Industries That Contribute.” “Some are unhappy about the specific types of companies, particularly the oil industry, that would lose tax benefits. “I have said for months that I am not supporting a repeal of tax cuts for the oil industry unless there are other industries that contribute,” said Senator Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana.” (Jennifer Steinhauer, “Some Democrats Are Balking At Obama’s Jobs Bill,” The New York Times, 9/14/11)
  • Landrieu Said That The Democrats’ Attempt To Raise Energy Taxes “Will Not Reduce Gasoline Prices One Penny.” LANDRIEU: “But I would just like to add my strong voice to urging my colleagues to read this bill, to look at it, and understand the inherent unfairness in it, the lack of significant deficit reduction, and the fact that it will not, although it is being touted as, it will not reduce gasoline prices by one penny.” (Sen. Mary Landrieu, Remarks On The U.S. Senate Floor, Washington D.C., 5/11/11)

Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK) In 2012: We Should “Get On To Real Energy Legislation And Not These Political Games Of Going Back And Forth Over Legislation That Everyone Knows Is Not Going To Pass.” “Begich said in an interview, as the measure was debated on the Senate floor, that the bill is nothing but a political stunt by his fellow Democrats to dump on the oil companies at a time of high gasoline prices. ‘If we’re going to do tax reform then everybody has to be at the table, not just selected groups because it polls well and you can beat up on them,’ Begich said. Begich said the Senate Democratic majority should ‘get on to real energy legislation and not these political games of going back and forth over legislation that everyone knows is not going to pass.’” (Sean Cockerham, “Alaska Sen. Begich Breaks With Democrats, Obama On Oil Tax Breaks,” McClatchy Newspapers, 3/28/12)

  • Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK) Opposed Repealing Domestic Energy Incentives And Called On Fellow Democrats To “Stop The Headline Grabbing And Get Serious About Energy Security.” SEN. BEGICH: “Sadly, some of my colleagues in this body are not much better. Instead of addressing the problem with specific solutions, they are going for headlines by dragging energy company executives before committees or proposing that roadblock incentives for increased domestic energy production, some of which have been on the books for decade. Let’s stop the headline grabbing and get serious about the energy security.” (Sen. Mark Begich, Remarks On The U.S. Senate Floor, Washington D.C., 5/11/11) 

Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) Also Voted Against The Bill In A Procedural Measure. “Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana were the only other Democrats to break with their party on the bill by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-NJ.” (Sean Cockerham, “Alaska Sen. Begich Breaks With Democrats, Obama On Oil Tax Breaks,” McClatchy Newspapers, 3/28/12)

THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN COUNTS CHECKS FROM GREEN ENERGY BUNDLERS BETTER THAN THEY CAN COUNT GREEN ENERGY PRODUCTION

Obama Ad: “He’s Raising Mileage Standards And Doubling Renewable Energy.” (Obama For America, “Remember”, 4/2/12)

FACT CHECK: Under Obama, Renewable Energy Production Has Not Doubled

From 2008 To 2011, Renewable Energy Produced Has Only Increased By 1.954 Quadrillion Btu, A 27.1 Percent Increase. (Table 1.2 Primary Energy Production By Source, EIA.gov, Accessed 4/2/12)

Primary Energy Production By Source, 2008-2011 (quadrillion Btu)

Year

Fossil

Nuclear

Renewable

Total

2008

57.482

8.427

7.205

73.114

2009

56.689

8.356

7.603

72.648

2010

58.250

8.434

8.116

74.800

2011

60.610

8.259

9.159

78.029

 

(Table 1.2 Primary Energy Production By Source, EIA.gov, Accessed 4/2/12)

Despite Soaring Promises From Obama And His Allies, Green Energy Has Barely Taken Flight And Has Failed To Create Jobs. “New clean-energy sources could address environmental, economic and national security problems all at once. In his 2008 convention speech, Barack Obama promised to create five million green economy jobs. The U.S. Conference of Mayors estimated in April 2009 that green jobs could account for 10 percent of new job growth over the next 30 years. Alas, it was not to be.” (David Brooks, “Where The Jobs Aren’t,” The New York Times, 9/5/11)

  • “There’s A Wealth Of Other Evidence To Suggest That The Green Economy Will Not Be A Short-Term Jobs Machine. According To Investor’s Business Daily, Executives At Johnson Controls Turned $300 Million In Green Technology Grants Into 150 Jobs — That’s $2 Million Per Job.” (David Brooks, “Where The Jobs Aren’t,” The New York Times, 9/5/11)

The Government Accountability Office Criticized The “Arbitrary” Process For Awarding Green Energy Loans And Found That Of The First 18 Loans “None Were Properly Documented.” “The Government Accountability Office has been highly critical of the way guaranteed loans and grants were doled out by the Department of Energy, complaining that the process appears ‘arbitrary’ and lacks transparency. In March 2011, for example, the GAO examined the first 18 loans that were approved and found that none were properly documented.” (Peter Schweizer, “Obama Campaign Backers And Bundlers Rewarded With Green Grants And Loans,” Newsweek, 11/12/11)

  • “But The Numbers Don’t Lie: The Recipients Of Loans And Grants Were, Overwhelmingly, Obama Cronies.” (Peter Schweizer, “Obama Campaign Backers And Bundlers Rewarded With Green Grants And Loans,” Newsweek, 11/12/11)
  • The Energy Department’s Inspector General Found That Contracts Were Steered To “Friends And Family.” “The Department of Energy’s inspector general, Gregory Friedman, who was not a political appointee, chastised the alternative-energy loan and grant programs for their absence of ‘sufficient transparency and accountability.’ He has testified that contracts have been steered to ‘friends and family.’” (Peter Schweizer, “Obama Campaign Backers And Bundlers Rewarded With Green Grants And Loans,” Newsweek, 11/12/11)