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2005-01-19-Lautenberg & Schumer—OPEC

Harrison Weblog

2005 blog


Five U.S. senators voice strong displeasure
over OPEC production cut at height of winter,  Jan. 19, 2005

A recent decision to cut oil production as the U.S. heads into the height of winter is unwarranted and can hurt the American economy, U.S. Sens. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and three other senators have written to Sheikh Ahmad Fahad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, acting secretary general of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

"We are deeply concerned by OPEC's recent decision to cut petroleum output by 1 million barrels," began the letter also signed by Democratic Sens. Kent Conrad of North Dakota, Byron Dorgan of North Dakota and Richard J. Durbin of Illinois.

"With oil still trading well in excess of $40 per barrel, we believe this action is unwarranted," the senators said. "The present high oil prices are harming the U.S. economy, and they are therefore of great concern to us. We will continue to monitor this situation closely, and we are prepared to take appropriate action to ensure that American families and businesses have access to affordable energy."

Lautenberg, who drafted the letter, said in a news release: ""Decisions made by OPEC should not hurt those families here in the U.S. struggling to fill their  tanks and keep their homes warm during the winter. It is critical OPEC do what  it has promised to do, and any actions taken that significantly increase the cost of gas should be  legal under international trade rules."
        —Donald H. Harrison