President Barack Obama’s quip that those worried about high gas prices should consider replacing an old gas guzzler with a new car is arrogant and unrealistic, former Michigan GOP Congressman Pete Hoekstra
Hoekstra, who is considering a run for the U.S. Senate, also said our current energy policies have resulted in a huge transfer of wealth to the detriment of the U.S. economy and its workers.
Obama made his remark in an appearance at a wind turbine plant in Pennsylvania last week. He said there was little anyone could do in the short term to lower gas prices now approaching $4 a gallon.
"If you're complaining about the price of gas and you're only getting 8 miles a gallon, you know," Obama said laughingly, according to the AP. "You might want to think about a trade-in."
Hoekstra called the quip, “pretty arrogant.”
“Telling the people, the 10.4 percent of the people in Michigan who are unemployed, telling them to go out and buy a new car, I’m sorry that’s not realistic,” the former Michigan congressman said.
“With what’s going on in the Middle East and the resources that are potentially available to the U.S., this is about American becoming energy independent. This $4 a gallon gasoline is going to definitively and definitely impact the economy of Michigan and our country and this president has slowed the exploration of more fossil fuels, shut that stuff down.
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"Open it up and in 10 to 20 years we can become much more energy independent. It’s not going to happen overnight but someone’s got to take the first step to lead.”
Hoekstra said the result of those policies pushed by environmentalists is a “huge transfer of wealth.”
“Every time we buy a barrel of oil, we’re sending $109 somewhere else rather than investing in American workers, American engineering and development. Having that dollar recycle 5 or 6 times through our economy, we’re shipping it overseas, it makes absolutely no sense; it is a drain of America’s dollars and resources by not drilling and producing energy here.”
Hoekstra represented the Wolverine State in the House from 1993 until this January. He passed up a reelection bid in 2008 to run for Michigan governor but lost the primary to Rick Snyder, who went on to win the general election.
Currently a senior advisor the Washington law firm of Dickstein Shaprio, Hoekstra is considering a return to elective office by seeking the Senate seat currently held by Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.
“We’ve not decided yes or no, we’re seriously considering it,” he said. “I expect that very soon we will make a decision. She is beatable and we can beat her with a conservative Republican.”
On international issues, the former chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said:
- The Muslim Brotherhood is a threat and a potential part of the new government in Egypt.
- With all the turmoil in the Mid-East, the United States needs to “step back and reboot. There is so much going on in the Islamic world that we have misjudged and misunderstood for the last 20 to 30 years.”
- The United States needs to decide what the mission is in Libya and that the Obama administration’s position is “awkward and … problematic.” “Remember, up until a few years ago, or maybe a few months ago, Gadhafi was our ally. Whether you like it or not, the Bush administration and the Obama administration embraced Gadhafi.”
- We ought to thank the President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder for, after 27 months of delay, finally coming to the right conclusion on whether to try 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other accused terrorists in federal court in New York and the closing of the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. “It took them a long time to get there but they got there,” he said of Holder’s announcement that the accused terrorists will be tried before military tribunals in Guantanamo.
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