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Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) this week came out in support of lifting the decades old ban on the export of U.S. crude oil. 

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, Speaker Boehner stated, “Lifting the ban would create an estimated 1 million jobs here at home, jobs that would frankly get created in every state. It would help bring down prices at the pump for consumers, and it will be good for our allies.” 

Since the 1970’s the U.S. has had a ban in place on the export of crude oil. The ban was originally enacted to protect U.S. supplies in response to decades of declining domestic production and issues in the international oil market. 

Yet in recent years the U.S. has experienced a renaissance in energy production, thanks in part to improvements in extraction and exploration methods, and it is increasingly evident the ban is no longer justified. As Speaker Boehner alluded, the economic benefits of lifting the ban would ripple throughout the economy and extend to all states, not just producers.

An overwhelming number of studies project lifting the export ban would create hundreds of thousands of jobs annually, increase household income for millions of Americans and lower domestic fuel prices. A recent study by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) stated that lifting the ban would increase the “size of the economy…employment, investment, public revenue and trade.”

The Speaker’s support finds widespread, bipartisan company with a growing number of those in Congress. On the House side Congressman Joe Barton (R-Tex.) has introduced legislation to lift the ban and Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) are leading a similar effort in the Senate.

Speaker Boehner’s endorsement for lifting the ban is a productive step forward. Americans for Tax Reform encourages members of Congress to follow the Speaker’s lead in supporting an end to this outdated relic of 1970’s era policy.


Photo credit: USDA