Here was the response I got from writing to my Senator.
Very well spoken, but a long winded way of saying a lot about nothing (and he's a Democrat mind you)
Note how there is no mention of the current $3 per gallon. I'd say that currently more than half of people's transportation costs are consumed by the prices at the pump. Seems almost like a form letter email response that's out of date.....
From the sound of it, he's about as concerned about it as he is Social Security, to wit, he has the golden parachute as most politicians do...... bet we're all paying to fuel his Cadillac.
In the end, fuel economy is only part of the solution. IMHO, he and the rest of the pencil pushers need to get hydrogen fueling stations out there. They need to really bring the cost down on Hybrids. Look at the CNN story today:
Don't tell me GM, Ford, Chrysler, Honda, Toyota an the rest of them can't make it happen if some average Joe can do it........
"Thank you for contacting me regarding gas prices.
I am deeply concerned about the effect of high gasoline prices on
working Americans. In early April of this year, global oil prices reached a
record high of $58.60 a barrel. The cost of gasoline consumes nearly
half of the average family's transportation expenses. Prices at the pump
have increased 43 cents per gallon since the end of April 2004, and the
average consumer now pays $2.20 per gallon. As a result, the typical household will pay at least $215 more for gasoline this year than in 2004.
The United States possesses less than three percent of proven global
oil reserves, yet consumes more than 25 percent of the world's produced
oil.Our reliance on foreign oil is a tremendous threat to our nation's energy security.
I have cosponsored the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act of
2004, or NOPEC (S. 555), which was introduced by Senators Mike DeWine
of Ohio and Herb Kohl of Wisconsin. This bill would establish that it is
a violation of U.S. law for a group of competing oil producers, such as
the OPEC nations, to act together to restrict supply or set prices of any
petroleum-based product. On April 14, 2005, this bill came before the
Judiciary Committee, on which I serve. We passed it by unanimous voice
vote and it was placed on the Senate calendar, but the Senate
leadershiphas not called up the measure for a vote by the full Senate.
Though our nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) is at 97 percent
of its capacity, the Administration continues to fill it, diverting oil
from the open market. Recently, I joined many of my Senate colleagues in
sending a letter to the President, urging him to reduce skyrocketing
prices at the gasoline pump by deferring oil deliveries and releasing a
portion of the SPR through an oil swap. However, the Administration
refuses to implement a program that could alleviate high gas prices
through use of oil available in the SPR.
We cannot engage in a meaningful conversation about reducing our
dependency on foreign oil without addressing our demand for gasoline.
If we truly are committed to crafting a sensible, sustainable energy
policy and reducing gas prices, improving automobile efficiency is essential.
During the energy debate in the last Congress, I offered an amendment
to increase the fuel economy of new cars and light trucks. Increasing the
Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standard for our vehicles would
save 123 billion gallons of gasoline by 2015. Studies show that raising
fuel economy standards to 40 miles per gallon (mpg) would save consumers as much as $2,000 over the lifetime of a car, even after taking into account the cost of the needed new technology. Savings at the pump would pay for the cost of the technological advances in about 18 months. While my amendment failed by a vote of 32-65, I remain committed to reducing the overall demand for gasoline through improving fuel efficiency. I also believe the innovative research and production required to meet this
goal would provide a valuable boost to our economy.
I am looking for additional ways to address the gas price situation
and will keep your concerns in mind as Congress examines this issue
Once again, thanks for contacting me."
Richard J. Durbin