By Jannis Falkenstern
PUNTA GORDA, Fla.–Under the blistering sun in the Florida Everglades, Gov. Ron DeSantis declared: “Biden needs to take responsibility” for the energy crisis; it’s not too late “to admit he was wrong.”
“He’s always trying to create a scapegoat,” an agitated DeSantis told reporters at a press conference on June 16. “He would have to admit he was wrong, and there’s nothing wrong with just admitting you were wrong and reversing course, but I don’t think he’s going to do that.”
When asked what he would do to reverse the price of fuel and rising inflation, the governor said he would travel back in time.
“Give me a time machine to go back to January 2021,” he said, laughing. “We would just do the opposite of what Biden has done and we’d be in a better spot.”
DeSantis said Biden had a lot of “chutzpah” to attack energy producers after pledging to shut down energy production.
“He campaigned saying he was going to shut down energy production in the United States,” DeSantis said. “And so then he comes in and puts really negative policies to try and kneecap American energy production.”
Companies are in business to make money, he added, and not allowing oil companies to drill and putting regulations on energy companies would not be profitable for them.
The governor explained that all of this has had a “huge impact on overall inflation” because everything that is produced is reliant upon energy. He said he “gets a kick” out of the inflation rates being “only 8.6 percent,” because he believes that inflation is higher, especially when you factor in the cost of everyday items that people need.
“That is not a good number, but it’s much higher,” DeSantis said. “When you look at the things that really count in somebody’s everyday life—when you look at the gasoline, when you look at groceries and utilities, things that make a significant impact on people’s daily lives.”
“This is the fruits of some really bad decisions,” he stated. “We need to be energy independent. We need to lead the world in production and get rid of all the roadblocks.”
Opening up the Keystone pipeline as well as creating another pipeline through Ohio and Pennsylvania are other ideas DeSantis said would be helpful in “moving the needle” to get oil to the eastern part of the United States.
“They don’t have pipelines to get it to the rest of the area because FERC, the federal agency won’t permit these pipelines. We really need to double down on American energy and have policies to reflect that—it would represent a complete 180.”
DeSantis said the American people are “insulted” at the president’s sudden awareness that oil companies need to be profitable.
“I guess they (oil companies) weren’t doing that for the last 25 years. All of a sudden, just now they’re doing that,” he said. “It’s insulting to the average citizen to listen to some of this drivel coming out of the White House because they know people are upset about it. They know they’re responsible for it … they’re just looking for a boogeyman to try to pin this on.”
Because of Florida’s large budget surplus, DeSantis said he and his administration is “prepared for whatever Biden throws at us.”
“It’s just so frustrating,” he said. “Because people get it. They understand that this is not good policy—it’s not a good direction.”