Lindsey pandering for McCain


Someone pointed this out to me yesterday, but I was having so much trouble getting ANYTHING to post I gave up on the blog for the day. Now that things seem to working again…

We know that Lindsey Graham’s best buddy in the Senate is John McCain. And predictably (but sadly), Lindsey is walking point for his party’s presumptive presidential nominee on his worst idea ever — the summer-long gas tax holiday:

Gas tax holiday to be introduced by Graham
By Doug Abrahms
WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said he will propose suspending the federal tax of 18.4 cents a gallon for the summer in a measure on the Senate floor as early as next week.
    "On a very short-term basis, I think Sen. (John) McCain’s got a really good idea — relieve that tax," said Graham, R-S.C.
    The idea also has been widely touted by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton. Democratic candidate Barack Obama has dismissed it as a political gimmick that will not solve the real problems of soaring demand and dwindling supply.
    Although presidential candidates have been talking about the gas tax holiday for weeks, there has been no vote yet.

Long-term, short-term, it’s a horrible idea, that goes precisely in the wrong direction.

CORRECTION TO PREVIOUS: Earlier at this point in the post, I said Jim DeMint was with Graham and McCain on this. Wesley called from DeMint’s office Wednesday to say that’s not true. So I’m sorry about that. It just goes to show, I guess, that you can’t believe everything you read. More about that later.

Remember, of course, that Hillary Clinton’s on their side on this. The only presidential candidate talking like a grownup on this issue is the youngest of them all, Barack Obama.

32 thoughts on “Lindsey pandering for McCain

  1. Lee Muller

    As long as the federal gas tax is enough to maintain federal highways, leave it alone.
    If it is more than needed for maintenance, then it should be reduced. We don’t need any more new highways built.
    What is needed is a rollback of all the 1993 Clinton tax increases on wages, salary, and FICA taxes.

  2. bud

    Lindsey is walking point for his party’s presumptive presidential nominee on his worst idea ever — the summer-long gas tax holiday:
    And you suggested that Lindsey Graham is more of an intellectual than Al Gore? What could you possibly base that absurd statement on?

  3. bud

    Hillary’s idea is not as bad as McCain. She proposes paying for the tax break by cutting back on the tax subsidies for big oil. She is at least not piling on to the national debt. Apparently deficit spending has become a GOP staple.

  4. Brad Warthen

    Yes, I did say he might be smarter than Al — you know, the guy who got the president to tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to help HIM get elected…
    And before we go off on a tangent about Al, he’s a REALLY smart guy. But Lindsey might be smarter.
    Of course, there are different definitions of “smart.” For instance, there’s the one Michael Corleone used when he said “It’s the smart move. Tessio was always smarter.”
    You should know about different definitions, bud. One of your favorite games is to use a different, perfectly valid definition of “partisan” to say I’m a liar about one of my core values — no matter how many times I make it clear which sense of the word I mean.

  5. Brittanicus

    It is a sad tale we tell knowing that McCain, Hillary or Obama cannot truly be trusted, when it comes to the illegal immigration plague. McCain specifically carries ominous baggage, because he stood with Kennedy, and other pro-illegal alien organization that would have swamped America with yet another AMNESTY. Just like the (ICE) squads who suddenly swoop down on large companies, there never seems to be convictions for the wealthy CEO’s. It’s like one huge publicity stunt played on the American workers, who end up having to support the illegal aliens already here. If any of these potential presidents really had a conviction to halt for good, the cheap labor crashing our border. They would adopt the now pending federal SAVE ACT (H.R.4088) , as an enforcement only law and once enacted would stop the travesty of parasite employers hiring illegal foreign nationals. Then and only then, will millions of foreign nationals start to repatriate themselves, because without jobs they would go home. McCain is probably worse about this issue, because he has flip-flopped about what his agenda is? At least the other two are straight forward, even though they will be fighting a losing battle against 80% the U.S population. Democrats are specifically vulnerable, because they are being led by Madam Nancy Pelosi who is out to gut any new immigration bill that benefits the US worker. She and other leading Democrats have already put their obnoxious label, on dismantling the border fence. Speaker Pelosi has her own financial reasons why, she is intimidating other Democrats from co-sponsoring the SAVE ACT. NUMBERSUSA for unsuppressed details

  6. penultimo mcfarland

    The Let’s Raise The Tax On Smoke So We Don’t Get Burned Blues
    By Penultimo McFarland
    Why don’t we raise the tax on gas until nobody can buy it? (Let’s go green; we can pedal our machine)
    Why don’t we raise the tax on food so we all go on a diet (let’s tax caloric sin so we all get razor thin)
    Why don’t we tax untruth the most so we all have to deny it? (Fifty bucks a lie, and if you lie twice, you die)
    Let Mr. Warthen pay the gas tax (every stinking penny; I don’t want to pay any)
    Let Mr. Warthen pay the gas tax (every stinking cent; he can also pay my rent)
    Yes let Mr. Warthen pay the gas tax (because he thinks every tax is just fine, fine, fine)

  7. Common Sense

    The Republicans are starting to sound like the welfare folks they so much detest. They want something for nothing. Like a tax on gas to pay for upkeep and construction of roads and bridges is inherently unfair? If you don’t want to pay the tax, don’t drive, don’t eat, and go naked. Folks, it costs money to provide services.

  8. randy e

    Someone is tone death to the common sense tune.
    Bloomberg analyzed the tax holiday best, “dumbest idea he ever heard.”
    Mcf, let’s not have a fed gas tax and we’ll all pedal our dirt bikes as the roads and bridges deteriorate.
    Graham, lieberman (spelling) and McCain are spiraling off into some reincarnated Lord of the Flies scenario.

  9. Lee Muller

    Hillary knows her “plan” for gas tax holiday will save the consumers nothing.
    Taxing at the pump, as we do now with sales taxes, is added onto the price, right there, were the customer can see the tax.
    Drive from SC to NC and you immediately see the higher sales tax at the pump.
    Taxing the profits of the oil companies is added to the price at the pump, in advance, so the customer can’t see the tax.
    Oil companies don’t make very high profit margins, just normal profits for any healthy company.
    80% of the oil company profits are earned on oveseas subsidiaries, and taxed there, and are off limits to Hillary’s scheme.

  10. Mike Cakora

    The way to counter a demand-driven price spiral is to reduce demand or increase supply. The gas-tax holiday has the perverse possibility of increasing demand by decreasing the retail price, so it’s a stooopid response. It also diverts funds from the Highway Trust Fund, depriving Congress of a key source of earmarks and bridges to nowhere.
    Asking / demanding OPEC to increase production too is rather silly; right now its members see no threat to their dominance and they figure that oil underground right now, today, is more valuable than bringing that oil above ground for sale. The latter would in fact reduce their income, and they’re not idiots, we are.
    In the past when demand was lower, OPEC would unleash extra oil to counter too steep a rise. Such moves made sense because they did not want to push the world into a recession that would drastically reduce demand. They also did not want to stimulate development of alternative sources of oil and other energy sources, fearing that such competition would ruin their pricing forever.
    Fortunately for OPEC, biofuels take about as much energy to get to retail as they provide, so the US and Europe can burn food without hurting OPECs fortunes. The only side effect is that the poor starve, but OPEC does not contribute much to the world’s food programs, so that’s no big deal. Moreover, solar and wind generation power fixed facilities, not vehicles, and end up displacing OPEC’s mortal enemy, coal.
    OPEC can see too that the US is not serious about expanding domestic production, so it can safely sit back and enjoy the run-up in fuel prices.
    There’s no one to blame but those who know better what’s good for us.

  11. Robert Rutland

    I do not see any suspense in the upcoming presidential election. The hype by talking heads and media writers is simply empty blather. All Republicans will have no problem in voting for McCain. There’s a portion of moderates that also like McCain and another segment of moderates that usually go democrat, but who are closet racists and will vote against Obama. Then there are the democratic stalwarts who are quiet racists that will have no problem voting against Obama. There are also positive posturing Obama “supportive” democrats that will decide after the their convention that the possiblity of the blacks completely taking over their party if Obama gets an eight year run would hurt them on a personal basis, and will therefore vote against him when protected by the voting booth curtains. You will get my drift by observing the Obama delegates attitudes and arrogance at their convention.

  12. Mike Cakora

    Whether Al Gore is letting altruism guide his efforts on climate change or is cynically pursuing personal wealth through his policy recommendations, he stands to benefit financially by most of the warmist legislation under consideration, especially cap and trade.
    There’s nothing wrong with making a couple of bucks, but it’s unwholesome to be perceived as benefiting from legislation and regulation that one advocates. I’m not accusing Big Al of cynicism, just noting that from here on out he’s vulnerable to the charge.

  13. David McKnight

    I ran for Congress in a Democratic primary over here on the northern side of the Carolina line in the same year, 1988, when Al Gore was running for President ths first time. I’ve been following his career ever since, and I believe that if there is one thing Al Gore is not, it’s that he is not cynical about working for better legislative and scientific solutions to the planetary environmental crisis confronting us.
    I don’t know if I was grabbing onto his political coattails or not during that campaign, but in Iredell County, N.C., where I played fiddle in a bluegrass band for an Al Gore rally, he won every precinct in the county in the presidential primary and so did I in the congressional primary.
    But then my fiddle playing may have run some of the other voters across the nearest county line.
    So whatever editorial bias this may involve on my part, I still think that Al Gore has gone about his entire public policy mission in the very best sort of manner. I only wish that there were one more Gore for President campaign somewhere up or down these Carolina highways and byways.
    By the way, it sure is good to write on a blog where folks don’t need convincing that “Carolina” applies just as much to the Palmetto State as it does to the Tar Heel State! They give me a hard time here in North Carolina when I occasionally slip up and refer to South Carolina simply as “Carolina” as in discussing the Carolina-Clemson game, but then they probably are on guard against Steve Spurrier’s latest surprise play strategies on the gridiron.

  14. Brad Warthen

    Well, it’s good to know you’ve got your mind right on the “Carolina” thing, David.
    I’ve got you beat by a decade on following Al Gore, though. I first ran into him in 1978, when he was running for re-election to Congress. He happened to be at a Democratic Party rally somewhere on the border of Middle and East Tennessees (either Cookeville or Crossville; I get those towns mixed up), and a gubernatorial candidate I was traveling with stopped there. I was impressed then, and assumed he’d run for president someday. You could just see it; he stood out from the politicos around him.
    Then in the early 80s, he started dropping by to see us at The Jackson Sun for two reasons — his mother had people in that neck of the woods (his older cousin down the street from me once amazed my kids by coming by on Christmas Eve dressed as Santa) and he was running for the Senate. We endorsed him for the Senate. It was during those couple of years leading up to the 1984 elections that I talked with him the most. Smart guy, but something I noticed early on was that he was better one-on-one than before a crowd. When I saw him before a crowd, the proverbial cigar store Indian came to mind.
    I was really proud of him when I saw “An Inconvenient Truth,” because it looked like he had finally learned to have a little stage presence. A bit late, but he finally got the knack…

  15. Randy E

    David McKnight, I’d like your feedback on my analysis of Gore. I felt he was a good man with great ideas. It’s my contention that his presidential campaigning reflected a Clinton influence. He wasn’t being genuine and tried to be another Slick Willie. By betraying himself, he allowed W to effectively play up the common man’s candidate.
    Case in point, after the debate with his pompus sighing, he was asked in an interview about the sighs. He seemed so flakey in trying to explain this.

  16. Richard L. Wolfe

    If Gore had won we would be screaming about $10/gallon instead of four. He and his Kyoto buddies were going to tax us to save the planet.
    Bud, Brad, Gore and Graham are both bought and paid for by the corporations so as to being smart, well they are both smart enough to know who butters their toast.

  17. David

    I can’t wait for November. I consider it my civic duty to vote against both of these nimrods:
    -Grahamnesty because he’s a smarmy, effeminate, arrogant and supercilious little snake is the grass, and
    -McCain because he is a doddering old skinbag that has no compunctions about abandoning conservative principle and practice whenever it suits him. His horrible intended policiy exscursions will further bankrupt this country for no good reason other than that his “green” nonsense plays good to his target audience: liberals.
    What a sad day it is when these two jokers pass for what should be republican leadership. David

  18. David

    Oops…should have said McCains’ target audience are liberals AND the mainstream media. But then again, there’s not any real difference. They’re all liberals. David

  19. Lee Muller

    The Gore family money came from tobacco, then from former Senator Al Gore, Sr working as a lobbyist for Occidental Petroleum.
    Occidental handled oil for the USSR, and it was Al Gore, Sr’s contacts that hooked up Al Jr with Chernomyrdin and Putin. When they stole $10 BILLION from the IMF accounts through Bank of New York, the Clinton adminstration just let it go.
    You have to wonder how much of that loot found its way back to Bill Clinton, Hillary, and the Gore 2000 campaign.
    The president of Occidental, Armand Hammer, was the son of a nortorious abortionist doctor, who was jailed several times. He was like the Jack Kevorkian of his day.
    No coincidence that Gore, Hillary, etc could cozy up to “pro-choice” when it’s lubricated with ‘Big Oil”, and from communists, too.

  20. peunltimo mcfarland

    A little late, I am, perhaps, but the expression, Randy, is tone deaf, not tone death.
    If you were playing with words, I didn’t get it.
    It might surprise you to find out I think the gas tax holiday is a stupid idea, too.
    I wrote my little song because Mr. Warthen wrote this:
    “Long-term, short-term, it’s a horrible idea, that goes precisely in the wrong direction.”
    The gas tax holiday “goes precisely in the wrong direction” because Mr. Warthen wants to tax gasoline an additional $2 per gallon to fund endless treatment for his allergic suffering and what Americans once upon a time would have called communism, now called communitarianism by th editor and his minions. He also wants to punish the oil companies by driving the price up those two bucks, as if they would care.
    Thing is, the gas tax holiday is just a political ploy, an anomalous blip on a radar screen, nothing worth worrying much about — unless your goal is to spur sentiment to tax us all until the least of us has as much as the most of us and there’s no reason for any responsible person to lift a finger to do anything.
    Or could it be someone just wants to set the stage for The State’s eventual endorsement of Barack Obama, when he’s preached McCain from the get-go?
    Whatever the reason, damning McCain for supporting a virtually insignificant gas tax holiday doesn’t make much sense.
    But neither does a $2 gas tax.

  21. bud

    OPEC can see too that the US is not serious about expanding domestic production, so it can safely sit back and enjoy the run-up in fuel prices.
    The U.S. CAN’T expand domestic production. It’s in terminal decline and will continue in terminal decline regardless of what we do. That is a brutal, but true fact. The sooner we accept that truth the sooner we can address the issue with realistic solutions rather than all this pointless posturing about the ANWR. Here is a summary of U.S. oil production, in 10 year increments since 1860. We actually produce less oil today than we did in 1950. That was BEFORE drilling in Alaska. BEFORE drilling in the Gulf. BEFORE drilling in the hills of South Dakota and Montana. BEFORE enhanced recovery techniques were developed and implemented. No amount of drilling will change this picture. In spite of huge expenditures by the oil companies over the last 40 years oil production continues its relentless decline.
    1860 500
    1870 5,261
    1880 26,286
    1890 45,824
    1900 63,621
    1910 209,557
    1920 442,929
    1930 898,011
    1940 1,503,176
    1950 1,973,574
    1960 2,574,933
    1970 3,517,450
    1980 3,146, 365
    1990 2,684,687
    2000 2,130,707
    2007 1,862,441

  22. Lee Muller

    The US reduced oil production by 1.2 BILLION barrels a year when Jimmy Carter slapped on an “excess profits” tax.
    We can’t import any more oil, because the Democrats have blocked the building of any new refineries.
    Why should the oil industry drill more wells, when the Democrats won’t let them build any more refineries?

  23. bud

    Lee, you are one thick son of a gun. Oil production has declined every decade since 1970 regardless of who was president. Most of the decline during the 70s occurred while the presidents were republicans – Nixon and Ford. Production declined during the 1980s while Reagan and Bush for the most part were in the White House and the GOP controlled the Senate. Production declined in the 1990s while the GOP controlled most of congress. Production has declined during the first 8 years of this century while Bush and Cheney, both oil men, controlled the White House and the GOP controlled congress. Expenditures by the oil companies has soared over the last 4 decades and has produced incredible results such as the Alaska pipeline and the enormous drilling platforms in the Gulf. It’s true no new refineries have been built in a while but existing refineries have been greatly expanded. Thanks to slumping demand for petroleum products refineries are now running at just over 80% capacity, so we’re not experiencing a refining bottleneck. The oil industry, flush with huge profits, has plowed billions into bringing oil to market but they’re faced with enormous geological difficulties that require more skilled labor to overcome. This skilled labor is in very short supply so if additional drilling areas were to come available they would likely not be exploited for many years to come. Labor, not availability of drilling locations, is the bottleneck.
    So here’s the bottom line. Oil will continue to be more scarce and expensive so we will be forced, one way or another, to use other sources of energy or do without. We may have to walk more, drive shorter distances in more fuel efficient vehicles. We will find creative ways to use less oil but it doesn’t help to continue blaming Jimmy Carter for something he is clearly not responsible for. Wake up America. This is a real challenge. But only by accepting the truth can we find solutions.

  24. Steve Gordy

    Jimmy Carter has been out of office for over 26 years. Of that time, Republicans have occupied the Oval Office for over 18 of those years. It’s a stretch to blame all our woes over the last quarter-century on him. The great curtailment in nuclear power plant construction occurred in the years from 1982 through 1988. Guess who was in the White House then?

  25. Lee Muller

    Guess who blocked nuclear plant and oil refinery construction – mostly Democrats, with some RINO help.
    Bush’s proposal for a 900% increase in R&D on solar, geothermal, fuel cells and wind power was blocked by … Democrats.
    Pelosi and Reid blocked the latest proposal to drill in ANWR. If Clinton hadn’t vetoed drilling in ANWR in the 1990s, we would be pumping almost as much oil out of there today as we import from Saudi Arabia, according to the US Geological Survey.
    Democrats blocked all the 2007 proposed oil refineries, led by Pelosi and Feinstein, whose state is full of oil wells, refineries and supertanker ports.
    Yes, both parties have environmental posers who will block progress, but the Democrats hold it as a core belief.

  26. bud

    Lee, as usual, is just plain wrong. The most likely figure for peak production in the ANWR is about 700,000 barrels per day. The extreme figure is only about 1.2 million. That’s still well below what we import from SA. But even if there had been no restrictions on drilling we would be no where near peak oil production in the ANWR. That would require significant inputs of resources that we just don’t have in abundance. It’s doubtful than any oil would be coming from the ANWR in 2008 but certainly nothing like 700k barrels. Perhaps with a crash effort we could be pumping 100k by now, assuming we could have the pipeline in place to pump the stuff. That small amount would be quickly countered by reductions in OPEC exports. In effect we would now be burning expensive domestic oil while the Saudis are conserving.
    Here’s some data from the EIA.
    Total Imports of Petroleum (Top 15 Countries)
    (Thousand Barrels per Day)
    Country Mar-08
    CANADA 2,303
    SAUDI ARABIA 1,542
    MEXICO 1,351
    NIGERIA 1,158
    VENEZUELA 1,015
    IRAQ 773
    ALGERIA 427
    RUSSIA 394
    ANGOLA 379
    ECUADOR 238
    BRAZIL 191
    KUWAIT 178
    COLOMBIA 150
    Note: The data in the tables above exclude oil imports into the U.S. territories.

  27. Lee Muller

    That EIA projection said ANWR would produce 600 million barrels a year, from 5.2 BILLION barrels reserve, at a price of $26.00 a barrel. This is 9% of our consumption, and 50% more oil than our current domestic reserves.
    At different prices, the projected production increases because it becomes more affordable to extract oil at higher prices.
    At $50 a barrel, reserves increase to 10.3 BILLION barrels, and 1,200 Millon barrels a year, almost as much as the imports from Saudi Arabia.
    At current prices, a lot more domestic oil must be counted in the reserves, because it becomes profitable to extract it.

  28. bud

    At current prices, a lot more domestic oil must be counted in the reserves, because it becomes profitable to extract it.
    Now this is just tooooooo funny. Domestic oil reserves have absolutely nothing to do with the price of oil. What could vary is the amount that’s economically viable. But reserves are the same whether oil is $10/barrel or $200. You can worship at the alter of the free market if you want but it doesn’t change geology. The amount of the stuff is finite.
    Besides, it’s still cheaper just to import oil from SA where it costs about $2/barrel to get out of the ground. Why use a resource until we have to. That’s just plain foolish.
    And besides, what you’re suggesting is that at $50/barrel, less than half what it’s selling for now, we can extract 3.2 million barrels a day from the ANWR. That figure is absolutely absurd. Even at peak production Prudoe Bay only produced 2.1 million barrels. (And only for a very brief time). And Prudoe Bay is far larger than the most optimistic figure for ANWR. No one is suggesting any more than about 1 million barrels a day. The most likely figure is around 700k. Pessimistic forcasts are for much less.

  29. Lee Muller

    These are not my estimates. The are the estimate of federal geologists, oil experts, and the EIA division of Dept of Energy.
    The variation of reserves in relation to market price comes from the EIA report to which you posted a link, as well as the USGS survey I posted.
    I happen to have actually read the reports. You just read some excerpt used out of context by socialist greenies seeking to convince you that ANWR is not part of the solution.

  30. bud

    Show me a link that says we can produce 3.2 million barrels a day from the ANWR. That claim is absolutely absurd. The EIA certainly never made such a claim.

  31. Lee Muller

    Show me some evidence that you have actually read the full EIA and USGS analysis before I waste any time talking with you.


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