U.S. Senator Jim Bunning of Kentucky says he hopes lawmakers can come to agreement on an energy bill before they begin their August recess.
Bunning says congressional approval of a bill that opens up more areas for domestic drilling while pursuing other sources of energy would send a clear signal.
“…that we are serious as heck about reducing our dependency on the Middle Eastern oil, on Venezuela, on Mexico and anywhere else we now import from. And that would send a severe message to the markets and i think you would see oil go the right way, down,” Bunning told reporters during his weekly conference call.
Bunning, a Republican, says Democrats are placing too much emphasis on oil speculators when they should be focusing on increasing domestic production and new technologies such as coal-to-liquid fuels.
Capitol Hill lawmakers are scheduled to begin their month-long August recess next week. Bunning says there’s a 50-50 chance the Senate will work through the weekend to hammer out an energy bill.