CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Throughout the Democratic presidential campaign season, Sen. Hillary Clinton has been on the defensive for voting to give the Bush Administration authority to invade Iraq. Illinois Sen. Barack Obama has effectively questioned her judgment in backing President Bush and Vice President Cheney as they steered the nation toward war. Now, Clinton is lumping Obama with the administration's -- she says Cheney's -- energy policies that gave multi-billion dollar federal subsidies to the oil industry in 2005. Clinton says the oil companies are rolling in cash, and she's moved to blame Obama for their huge profits. With the war out of the headlines and $3.45-a-gallon gas prices in the headlines, she's trying to show that she had the wisdom to doubt the White House when Obama rolled over. Her attack comes as gasoline prices have hit records at the pumps:
"Sadly, when Senator Obama had the chance to stand up against Dick Cheney's energy policies, he instead voted yes and helped bring us these huge tax cuts for big oil."
Clinton, who visited a Pennsylvania gas station where she complained that oil men are running the White House, is painting Obama as their dupe. Her campaign contends the Energy Policy Act of 2005 was filled with breaks for the industry, including an exemption from the Safe Water Drinking Act for a methane gas extraction technique that could contaminate water supplies. Obama voted "aye" on the 2005 Energy bill on July 29 of that year; Clinton voted "no." Her campaign says:
"Senator Obama voted for the 2005 energy bill, which provided billions in tax subsidies and giveaways to big oil. This bill was called 'The Best Energy Bill Coporations Could Buy,' by Public Citizen. It provided $6 billion in oil and gas subsidies; $9 billion in coal subsidies; $12 billion in nuclear subsidies; and a host of other oil and gas regulatory rollbacks, including exempting a coalbed methane drilling technique called 'hydraulic fracturing' from the Safe Drinking Water Act -- an action that could make our drinking water unsafe. Senator Clinton opposed this bill because she believed we ought to be investing in alternative and renewable energy, and reducing our dependence on foreign oil. Senator Obama supported this bill."