Mike Braun
(Photo by Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images)

Braun: Keystone XL Pipeline Would Offset Barrels We Import From Russia

WASHINGTON — Republicans are screaming for the White House to open up America’s energy sector in order to curb rising energy costs, but Democrats are skeptical of taking such steps.

The average price for unleaded gasoline in the U.S. hit just north of $3.70 a gallon on Thursday, the highest that average has been since March of 2013. A big reason for the surge has been Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

In response to the invasion, the rest of the world has done its best to cut Russia off economically with sanctions. But the ace in the hole for Russia is that it is the world’s second-largest oil producer.

“Ban the oil coming from Russia (into the U.S.),” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday.

That’s as far as the agreement goes between Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill when it comes to Russian oil. The White House is lukewarm on the idea of banning Russian oil.

“That would raise prices at the gas pump for the American people, around the world, because it would reduce the supply available,” said White House press secretary Jen Psaki. The U.S. is still importing oil from Russia despite the invasion.

Still, prices were rising even before the invasion. Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN) blames the White House for undoing most policies enacted by the Trump administration to keep prices low in the name of curbing Climate Change.

“Look to see what it was back in the Trump administration,” Braun told Fox Business. “Lowest inflation we had, everything was working well, rising wages in the toughest spots. If we had the Keystone XL pipeline actually working it would offset all the barrels we are importing from Russia.”

Braun believes if Democrats were to work with Republicans on passing legislation to help ease inflation it would be “politically motivated.”

Biden shut down the pipeline just days into his presidency and has no plans to open it up again. Democrats, such as Pelosi, are also shying away from expanding drilling on public lands in order to offset the rising cost of oil.

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