01 Jan 2002 Teamsters’ Hoffa Endorses Alaskan Oil Exploration, Says Union Will Remember Politicians Who Vote Against Job Creation & Energy Independence
International Brotherhood of Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa told The National Center for Public Policy Research that the Teamsters will hold politicians accountable for their opposition to oil exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) during this fall’s political campaigns.
In a statement delivered to The National Center’s John P. McGovern MD Center for Environmental and Regulation Affairs, Hoffa said: “ANWR provides expanded energy resources and increased work opportunities for Teamster members and their families. We cannot understand how so-called friends of working families can stand in the way of responsible job creation like ANWR, which already has bipartisan support to pass on a straight up or down vote. Teamster members will ‘Remember in November’ and hold those politicians accountable for their actions which hurt working families. We can do no less.”
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters has 1.4 million members in 568 local unions nationwide. The biggest concentrations of Teamsters members are located in the central and eastern United States. During his inauguration as general president of the union on March 22, Hoffa cited ANWR exploration as one of the Teamsters’ key issues.
Although the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved energy legislation supported by President George W. Bush that includes ANWR exploration, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) has refused to allow the U.S. Senate to vote on the legislation. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the ANWR is estimated to contain between 5.7 and 16 billion barrels of oil – enough to replace half of all the oil the U.S. currently imports from the Persian Gulf region for 35 years. Only 2,000 of the ANWR’s 19.5 million acres will be affected by the exploration, and wildlife in the region will not be harmed.
“Labor unions and conservatives have worked hand-in-glove, fighting the powerful environmental lobby to open ANWR to oil and gas exploration,” said Tom Randall, director of the John P. McGovern MD Center for Environmental and Regulatory Affairs. “Hopefully, they will continue to work together on environmental issues because they have a common goal: American jobs.”
Information on ANWR oil exploration from the John P. McGovern MD Center for Environmental and Regulatory Affairs includes: “Wishes Won’t Fuel Our Economy: We Need Oil Drilling” (http://www.nationalcenter.org/NPA375.html), “Senate Democrats Fight Energy Bill” (http://www.nationalcenter.org/TSR101801.html) and “Environmentalists Opposition to Oil Exploration in ANWR is Unfounded” (http://www.nationalcenter.org/NPA324.html).