Senate Rebukes Bush On Energy Policy

The Senate issued a strong, bipartisan rebuke to President Bush on energy policy Tuesday morning, voting 97-1 in favor of a measure to suspend oil shipments to the strategic petroleum reserve, despite the White House's objections to the provision.

"We are buying the most expensive crude oil in the history of the world and storing it," said Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.). "When American consumers are being burned at the stake with high energy prices, its government should not be carrying the wood."

With the strategic petroleum reserve now 97% filled, many lawmakers argued it was time to stop taking valuable barrels of oil off the market and time to stop purchasing the barrels when oil prices are at all-time highs.

The administration, however, has refused to budge on the issue, arguing that the reserve should be filled to its capacity and that keeping it filled is a national security issue in order to prevent against a disruption in supply.

Only Sen. Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) voted against the measure, as lawmakers from both parties have been hearing an earful from constituents over the high price of gas and were eager to take any steps to address the problem.
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