Hagerty: What We Have is an Administration That Would Rather Deal With International Killers Than With American Drillers

March 9, 2022

WASHINGTON—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today joined members of the Senate Republican Conference in a press conference at the U.S. Capitol to discuss the need to return to American energy independence and the Biden Administration’s negotiations to revive the disastrous Iran Nuclear Deal.

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Partial Transcript

Hagerty on the need to return to energy independence: “I’d just like to hit on another point that the Biden Administration has brought home to America, and that is inflation. And perhaps the biggest cause of this inflation is the war that the Biden Administration has waged on American energy. What we’ve seen is a dramatic increase in inflation. It’s hurting every American. And now what we see as Russian tanks roll into Ukraine, gas prices moving even further. What’s the Biden Administration offering to address this massive inflation, to address the pain that every American is feeling at the pump? Well, let’s work with our adversaries. Let’s send a team to Venezuela. Let’s send a team to Iran. Let’s cut a deal with the Iranians to put their oil on the market, with the Venezuelans to put their oil on the market. What we have is an Administration that would rather deal with international killers than with American drillers. This, my friends, has to stop, and we could stop it tomorrow. All we need to do is have this Administration come out and clearly state that we’re going to reopen the Keystone XL pipeline, that we’re going to get back in the energy business, that we’re going to become energy independent again, that we’re going to remove this massive lever that Vladimir Putin has over the American economy—this lever that’s pushing us into the arms of Iran; that’s pushing us into the arms of Maduro and Venezuela. As my colleagues have said, this makes no sense whatsoever. We need to turn this deal in Iran down tomorrow. We need to get back into the energy business today.”

Hagerty on his Iran Sanctions Relief Review Act of 2021: “Myself and 37 other colleagues are all co-sponsors of the [Iran Sanctions Relief Review Act of 2021]. It takes the same language that was used with the Russian [Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions] Act that was passed with bilateral [bipartisan] support back in 2017, substitutes the word Russia with Iran. Any sanctions relief that’s provided to Iran—and this deal will have sanctions relief in it—must come to this Senate, must come to the House for review. That’s what we’d like to see done. And we are, again, the majority of Republicans in our conference are sponsoring this act. So, there’s another avenue that we can take as well to broaden the reach. Again, as Senator [Ted] Cruz mentioned, this should come as a treaty, if not, INARA [Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act] should work. Failing that, my legislation will help address it.”