Mr. Charlie goes to Washington - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Opinion

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Mr. Charlie goes to Washington

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Posted: Friday, May 13, 2011 6:00 pm


President Harry S. Truman once said, “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.”  Well, it turns out he was right. My Wheaten Terrier mix, Charlie Schweikert, finally made the trek with me to Washington, D.C. for a temporary sabbatical.

While he has been in the nation’s Capitol, Charlie has learned about American history - even making an appearance at the National Archives, where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution are housed. Of course, he is learning more than he probably wants to know about the federal government. In addition to sniffing around every nook and cranny of the U.S. Capitol building, Charlie has met quite a few of my colleagues and friendly Capitol Hill police officers.

Politically, it seems that Charlie has gone where few dogs have gone before.

This week, while Charlie was trying to figure out where I hid his bacon bits, our team was busy working on a key gas and natural resources bill on the House floor.

It doesn’t matter if you are in Fountain Hills or in Washington, D.C., everyone is feeling the pinch at the pump. Gas prices have soared to more than $4 dollars a gallon with no relief in sight.

While the President has yet to address these high prices, the House of Representatives has largely remained focused on legislation to ease them. On Wednesday, I voted for HR 1231, the Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act. This bill ends the Obama Administration’s de facto job-killing moratorium on American energy and taps into our own natural resources. This is a huge victory for American taxpayers and job creators. The President’s moratorium on exploration and drilling in the Gulf Coast drove up prices exponentially at the pump and cost our economy tens of thousands of jobs nationwide.

It is clear, with an unemployment rate near 9 percent, now is not the time to pursue an ideological agenda that will further increase prices and cost more American jobs.

This was also a key victory for our national security. Obama’s Gulf Moratorium has dramatically decreased our own domestic oil production, making us increasingly reliant on unstable Middle Eastern regimes, many of whom are not our allies. While this bill is a good first step, we must continue to achieve full energy independence.

This legislation will put Americans back to work, increase American energy production, and address rising gasoline prices in a safe, responsible and transparent manner.

House Republicans will continue to pursue an all-of-the-above energy plan with a focus aimed at increasing our domestic production while creating jobs here at home.

While we hope to, once and for all, end our dependence on foreign sources of oil and see prices down at the pump, our friend Charlie will still be sniffing around for his bacon bits.

• David Schweikert (R-Ariz.) is a member of Congress in Arizona’s District 5, which includes Ahwatukee Foothills. Reach him locally at (480) 946-2411 or in Washington D.C. at (202) 225-2190. com

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