The United States achieved energy independence under former President Donald Trump, but the Biden administration is pulling the country back from its leadership role in the global energy market and that's the "wrong path for America," Rep. Bill Johnson said Tuesday on Newsmax.
"When you look at what the Russians do, they use energy as leverage, as a hammer over European members and many of those were our friends and allies," the Ohio Republican said in an interview on Newsmax's "National Report."
But Biden is "applauding" Russia's Nord Stream 2 pipeline to Germany, which the United States protects as part of NATO while shutting down the Keystone XL pipeline and enacting permit restrictions to stop the development of gas and oil reserves on public land, said Johnson.
"It goes without saying that the Biden administration is pulling back away from the leadership table in the global energy market, and I think that's the wrong path for America," said Johnson.
Meanwhile, there is "no doubt in my mind" about Russia being behind massive cyberattacks in the United States, including on the Continental pipeline, given Russia's government and systems, said Johnson.
"I would find it hard to believe that Vladimir Putin does not know who the dark side, the criminal folks are that perpetrated that," said Johnson, adding that he gets "really concerned" about the cyberattacks on critical U.S. infrastructure.
"Can you imagine what would happen if they were successful in attacking our energy grid on a wide scale?" Johnson said. "Our transportation network, our financial network, our healthcare network all at the same time? I mean, they could cripple America's economy in a matter of minutes, not days, weeks, or months, and we need to take this very seriously."
Actions do speak louder than words, he added, but "President Biden's actions are weak."
The Trump administration also recognized the dangers that China poses through actions such as "planting nefarious software" inside the nation's critical systems, including the transformers that power the U.S. electric grid, the lawmaker said.
"President Trump stopped it, but now the Biden administration has suspended that executive order for 90 days and is investigating it," said Johnson. "I can only hope that the Biden administration takes this situation very, very seriously and that they come to the same conclusion that the Chinese cannot be trusted to hold our national energy grid in the palm of their hands."
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