The move will have no practical effect unless Congress acts, too. Both executive and legislative bans must be lifted before offshore exploration can happen....
The president's direct link between record gas prices and offshore drilling glossed over a key point. Even if Congress agreed, the exploration for oil would take years to produce real results. It is not projected to reduce gas prices in the short term. Even the White House routinely emphasizes there is no quick fix.
That did not stop Bush from building his case around today's prices at the pump.
He said every extra dollar that families must spend on gas is one they could be using to put food on their table or to send a child to school. The American people, he said, are now "waiting to see what the Congress will do."
The White House says that acting now on a long-term solution would send a serious signal to the market that more oil supply will be coming on line. That, in turn, could ease oil prices, advocates say. Business groups and many Republican lawmakers applauded the move to expand the energy supply in the U.S.
Democrats were unmoved.
"The Bush plan is a hoax," responded House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. "It will neither reduce gas prices nor increase energy independence."
We'll see where this ends up. I have a feeling the Dems will cave. That's what they do best.