Rep. Paul Ryan said this morning on "This Week" that the idea of releasing oil from strategic reserves to drive down domestic gas prices was "political pixie dust in an election year."
"I call it the political pixie dust in an election year. It really doesn't do a lot," said Ryan. "Instead of begging the Saudis to sell us more of their oil, what our budget does is says let's go and explore more of our own oil."
I asked Ryan about the idea of releasing oil from strategic reserves after Rep. Chris Van Hollen said that "the president has reached out to other oil-producing countries around the world. And they have got a strategy now to get more oil on the market. That should drive down prices. It should begin to pop that speculative bubble." The Obama administration had declined to outline specific action it is taking in this regard even as France said earlier this week that it is considering tapping its reserves as part of an effort by the United States to lower the price of oil.
Ryan, a congressman from Wisconsin, suggested that access should be granted to "oil that is locked on public lands by President Obama."
"Let's open up the Keystone pipeline to bring Canadian oil into our country to dramatically reduce our dependency on foreign oil. It creates jobs here in America. It lowers gas prices, increases supply, " said Ryan. "And just by passing this legislation, you'll improve the prices in the futures market, because you'll see that all this new American-made energy is coming online. Unfortunately, the president is standing in the way of all of those kinds of reforms, and so he's resorting to what I call these sort of policy gimmicks that in the past really haven't done a whole lot to change the outcome."