White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the Obama administration is willing to work with Congress on the plan to encourage more alternative fuel sources and fund research that will eventually develop more cars that “run on anything but gasoline.”
In fact the President is now seeking bipartisan support that will allow the government to draw $2 billion over 10 years from royalties the government receives from offshore drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf in order to fund programs aimed at lowering the cost of vehicles that run on electricity, biofuels, natural gas or other non-oil fuel sources.
"The only way to break this cycle of spiking gas prices for good is to shift our car and trucks entirely off oil," Obama said during a tour of the Argonne National Laboratories outside Chicago yesterday. The facility is known for its research into advanced batteries used in electric cars, before speaking about the need to find more ways to wean cars and trucks off oil.
"This is not a Democratic idea or a Republican idea," Obama said, standing in front of three cars designed to run on alternative fuels. "This is just a smart idea."
The United States has a newfound wealth of oil and natural gas resources made possible by hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," and other drilling advancements, but consumers still face high prices at the pumps because gasoline prices are tied to world markets.
In the meantime, Republicans excoriated his administration for delaying approval of the Keystone XL crude oil pipeline from Canada, as well as its disastrous backing of certain projects during his first term, including granting a government loan of $527 million to California solar panel maker Solyndra.