Sarah Palin’s Super Script
Below, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s energy policy speech as delivered. The remarks she added — that weren’t on the prompter or in the speech as it was sent out to the media — are in bold.
PALIN: Have a seat and we will just get to talk about one of these most excited issues, in my world anyway, and that’s energy. And, I’ll tell you, taking the tour of this plant right now, and I thank you so much, doctor, for allowing that tour. I get so excited talking about energy. I want to get you excited about it, because energy independence for our country is all about our nation’s security and our economic prosperity, the opportunities that we have for jobs. And I would encourage you, also, get to know about this company right here, Xunlight. And, what, uh, you have been able to accomplish here is very inspiring and can be seen, I think it’s a role model even, you, the organization here, what you’ve accomplished for others in our great nation in order to allow our nation to become energy secure. So, so happy to get to be with you today. And, again, I appreciate that tour.
**Excited about this, I thank you very much, and for your hospitality again, doctor, thank you. Um, good, good things being said about this corporation as you’re progressing with the solar panels, understanding alternative energy sources so necessary as a piece of the puzzle that we’re working on. I know my state of Alaska certainly is working on this, all that we can do to put the pieces together to allow our nation to become energy secure. **
And, every day, I know that here, especially, when there are no cameras around to draw attention to it, this company and others like it are engaged in the great enterprise of energy independence. And what we see here is just a glimpse of much bigger things to come. Solar panels here, solar energy being tapped into. It’s one of many alternative energy sources that is changing our economy for the better. And one day these sources, they’re gonna change our economy forever.
All who work in pursuit of new and clean energy sources understand that America’s energy problems do not go away when oil and gas prices fall, as they have in recent weeks. Oil today is running at about 64 dollars a barrel – that’s less than half of what it was just a couple of months ago. And though this sudden drop in prices sure makes a difference for all of our families and our pocket books and for our local communities’ budgets and our state budgets, the danger, still, of our dependence on foreign oil is just as real as it was before this decline in oil and gas prices. It is just as great a threat.
The price of oil is declining largely because of the market’s expectation of a broad recession that would lower demand. And that’s not a good indicator, perhaps, of things to come, and should only add to our sense of urgency in gaining energy independence. When our economy recovers, and growth once again creates new demand, as it will, we could run into the same brick wall of rising oil and gas prices — and now is the time to make sure that that doesn’t happen. We have an opportunity right now, seizing this moment with lower prices to really start tapping in to some technology that will allow our nation to be firmly put on that path towards energy independence. In Washington, we can view this period of lower prices as just one more chance to make excuses, embracing status quo, really doing nothing about it, on the energy, uh, security problem that we face. And I think that we have heard enough excuses and we’ve been lax for too long. Or we can view this opportunity as the time to finally confront the problem. And John McCain and I are so committed to confronting and fixing the problem that we face with our reliance on foreign sources of energy.
In reality, yes, in reality, volatile oil prices are just the most immediate consequence when foreign powers control our energy supplies. They are an economic symptom of a strategic problem. And prices will only stabilize only when we have reached the great goal of energy security for America.
As in other challenges that confront our nation, we must shape events, and not simply manage crisis. Let’s look back in history and realize and learn from mistakes made in the past. We have that luxury of doing that now. Instead of assuming we have to just manage crisis from Washington, D.C., let’s be proactive and take an opportunity like we have today to confront a problem and fix a problem. We must steer far clear of the errors and false assumptions that have marked the energy policies of nearly twenty Congresses and seven presidents. Some tasks will be the work of decades, and some just the work of years. And they all will begin in the next term of our next president. And it all begins on November 4th. Our country’s gonna go one of two ways with energy policy, leading us towards energy security, relying on the domestic solutions that are in front of us, or more and more reliance on foreign sources of energy. November 4th is that time of choosing. We’re gonna go one of two ways.
For our part, John McCain and I, we’re determined to set this country firmly on a path toward energy independence. America has the resources to achieve this vital goal. We certainly have the ingenuity. And, John McCain and I, if are elected, we will supply the political will, finally to get this done.
In my experience in Alaska, I have seen what American ingenuity can achieve if given a chance. As governor of a huge energy-producing state, and as chair of our state’s oil and gas conservation commission, and as chairman of the nation’s Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, I’ve also seen how political pressures, and special interests, and corporate abuses, though, can work against the clear public interest in expanding our domestic energy supplies. I’ve had to take on some of that, especially there in Alaska, taking on a good old boy network that had been too controlled by some of those interests.
Alaska is one of the most resource-rich places on earth. Yet for many years, our state’s oil and gas wealth was the carefully guarded preserve of the political establishment — the good ol’ boy network –- and it was rewarded by a few big oil companies through an oil services company that liked things just the way that they were. They didn’t want any shaking up. They didn’t want anybody to come in and disrupt the good things that they had going there. But it was to the public’s detriment what was going on. And, as you may have seen this week in the news, Alaska’s senior senator is not the first man to discover the hazards of getting too close to oiled, moneyed interests with agendas of their own.
For the people of Alaska and their representatives, it’s been a hard enough time that we have had to persuade Congress, even, to authorize some of our developments. Start from the beginning of our energy producing history, trying to get authorization to construct our original Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline. When Congress finally acted in 1973 to allow that infrastructure to be built, they approved that pipeline over the “No” votes of a few senators, including Senator Joe Biden. He kicked his career off, his political career, saying no to this piece of infrastructure up in Alaska that has safely flowed 15 billion barrels of U.S. crude into hungry U.S. markets. He started his career saying no to that domestic solution, and it’s been no every since.
For the next three decades in Alaska then, there had been talk of building our next piece of infrastructure that was so necessary to feed hungry U.S. markets. This would be a gas pipeline to transport cleaner, greener natural gas down to the Lower 48. We have such an abundance of natural gas in Alaska. Geologists show us hundreds of trillions of cubic feet waiting to be tapped on offshore. But, all that it ever amounted to up in Alaska and across the U.S. for the plans for this gas line had been talk. Everybody talked about it and planned for it and dreamed about it. There have been articles written about the need for a natural gas pipeline to feed U.S. markets since the ’50s. Ever since I grew up I remember hearing about this dream for a natural gas pipeline. But all it was, was talk. And one of the main obstacles was big oil itself that wanted a pipeline, a gas pipeline even to be built only on their terms — ExxonMobil was one of the participants in that, and other companies also.
They should have been competing to invest in a new means of delivering their product to market. **They should have been competing for the right to tap into the hungry markets, flowing our resources into those hungry markets. And, **instead, they wanted a higher and higher price than any fair competition would yield, so they wouldn’t build the line. They were holding out for more billions of dollars — in public money. No one in good conscience could pay them what they wanted to build that gas line. And that’s how things were left, that’s how we found them when I decided to run for governor. There was no progress, no pipeline, no gas revenue for Alaska, no added energy security for America, because previously it had been all talk.
So we introduced, when I got elected, we introduced the big oil companies and their lobbyists to a concept of something that, evidently, they had forgotten, and that’s free-market competition. They had a monopoly, previously, on power and on resources, and we broke it.
And the result**, finally, is** progress on the largest private-sector infrastructure project in North America’s history — a nearly forty-billion-dollar natural gas pipeline to help lead America to energy independence. **That’s what I’ve been working on up in Alaska, to help all of you, to help the rest of the U.S., energy supplies safely, ethically being tapped into, flowing through infrastructure to feed our hungry markets. So, with this gas line, **when the last section of pipe is laid and its valves are opened, that gas line will lead America one step farther away from reliance on foreign energy. And that pipeline, that pipeline will be a lifeline — freeing us from more U.S. debt, and dependence, and the influence of foreign powers that do not have America’s interests at heart. And it is so important that more Americans realize what we’re up against when we consider our reliance on these foreign sources.
What we’ve done in Alaska, we shook things up in our state capital. And, whatever the good ol’ boys are running these days, I know it’s not the State of Alaska. And that’s the kind of reform that we need, serious reform in Washington, because the stakes for our country could not be higher. And if we do not transform and reform our government, we’re never going to get there, a secure, independent nation when it comes to energy.
Energy security is one of the great questions in this election. Sometimes I think it’s no wonder that our opponents don’t want to talk a whole lot about this, because they don’t get it. It doesn’t seem that they understand that we have the ingenuity and the domestic solutions right here. They don’t want to talk about it. But, it tests our ability to confront and solve hard problems in Washington, instead of constantly taking the easy way out and just putting the problem off for later. And it brings together so many other issues also — from the value of our pay checks to our nation’s most vital interests abroad. Americans blame Washington for doing next to nothing about our energy problems, and on that front they are right. The American public is right when they understand that not enough has been done in D.C. to get us off the path that we’re on, put us on a better path.
Abroad, we see Russia now with designs on a vital pipeline in the Caucasus. Wouldn’t they love to control entirely that pipeline? Its strategy there is to divide and intimidate our European allies by using energy as a weapon. And there, as elsewhere, we cannot leave ourselves at the mercy of foreign suppliers.
To confront the threat that Iran too might seek to cut off nearly a fifth of world’s oil supplies … or that terrorists might strike at a vital refining facilities in Saudi Arabia … or to consider that Venezuela might shut off its oil deliveries**, as Hugo Chavez likes to threaten sometimes** … we Americans need to produce more of our own oil and gas. And we can do it because we have it here, God has so richly blessed our land with the supplies that we need.
And, in the worst cases, some of the most, the world’s most oil-rich nations**, they’re** also the most oppressive societies. And whether we like it or not, the money that we pay**, U.S. dollars going to pay** for their oil only makes them more powerful and more oppressive. Oil wealth allows undemocratic governments to crush dissent and to subjugate women, to oppress the people that live in these countries. Other regimes, too, they use it to finance terrorists, finance terrorists around the world and criminal syndicates in our own hemisphere.
By relying upon oil from the Middle East, we not only provide wealth to the sponsors of terror -– but we provide high-value targets to the terrorists themselves. Across the world these pipelines, refineries, transit routes and terminals for the oil we rely on. And Al Qaeda terrorists, they know where they are.
And if all of that wasn’t bad enough, there is also, of course, the damage that our dependence on foreign oil inflicts on our economy. Over the years, trillions of dollars have flowed out of our country, often to nations or regimes hostile to our country. Through this massive transfer of wealth, we lose hundreds of billions of dollars a year that would be much better invested in American enterprises to create American jobs.
**And **all of this explains why, as Senator McCain has said, energy security is not just one more issue on the candidate questionnaire. It’s much more important than that. Energy security is the sum total of so many problems that confront our nation. It demands of us that we shake off the old ways, no more embracing status quo on this issue. We must negotiate new hazards, and make hard choices that have long deferred. And three decades of partisan paralysis on energy security, that is enough. I do not want to hand this problem on to my children or your children. I want to take care of it, confront it, fix the problem, we can do this. It’s time that we meet this challenge in a way consistent with the character of this nation, and that starts with producing more of our own energy.
And in a McCain administration, in our administration, we will authorize and support new exploration and production of America’s own oil and gas reserves — because we cannot outsource the solution to America’s energy problem, we can’t outsource that, we gotta take care of that ourselves. Again, we can do this. Every year, we are sending hundreds of billions of dollars out of the country for oil imports, much of it from OPEC, while America’s own oil and gas reserves in America are warehoused underground, they’re going unused. And take it from a gal who knows the North Slope of Alaska: we’ve got lots of both**, oil, gas. We gotta lot of coal also.**
And as a matter of fairness, we must assure affordable fuel for America by producing more of the trillions of dollars’ worth of our oil and gas. Our land and offshore, we’ve gotta drill here, we’ve gotta drill now. And that is one thing that as we travel around this nation in this campaign and we’re in these rallies, you say that and it resonates because people understand then, and they start chanting drill baby drill, they understand that we must drill here, drill now, because we can do it, and because of the geology of so many of the areas that they live, they understand that warehoused underground are those resources.
Another essential means to energy independence is a dramatic expansion in the use of nuclear energy. We’ve gotta tap into that. In our administration, we will set this nation on a course to build 45 new nuclear reactors by the year 2030. That’s a lofty goal, I know. And we will set the goal of 100 new plants to power the homes and factories and cities of America. This has to be tapped into also. This has to be part of the solution.
This task will be as difficult as it is necessary. We will need to recover all the knowledge and the skills that have been lost over three stagnant decades in a highly technical field, like nuclear. We need to solve complex problems of moving and storing materials that will always need that safeguarding. And we will need to do all of these things, and do them right, and we have done, as we have done great things before. **We have to tap into American ingenuity and make sure that our young people are growing up understanding the benefits of nuclear, and our colleges are teaching that science also. **
One of the efforts that will assist in securing our overall energy future is the development of clean-coal technology also. Here we have another big disagreement with our opponents. It was just about a month ago that Joe Biden told a voter in a rope line, but media caught him on tape, he told a, he told a voter that “we’re not supporting clean coal.” He says that clean coal, it’s, it’s a good idea for China, but, sorry Ohio, he says, Joe Biden says it’s not for you.
And that is just nonsense, and there’s plenty more of that nonsense when, um, you look at Senator Biden’s record. He’s against drilling off our coasts. He says it’s for environmental reasons that he’s opposed. But he says that offshore drilling holds real promise for the island nation of Cyprus — as if the environmental safeguards there are more rigorous than our own. And so far as he and Senator Obama are concerned, nuclear power’s okay, too — but only for France and other European nations. Our opponents seem to have all sorts of solutions and ideas to meet the energy needs of other nations — now if they would only focus on more of what America needs.
And it is worth asking why Senators Obama and Biden are opposed to the very same production methods in America that they advocate for other nations. **Nobody seems to be asking them that. **Usually, the answer that we hear –- gotta assume based on their record and some of their comments –- is that they fear environmental harm from domestic production, especially in the case of offshore drilling. But there’s a big problem here, even if we take their argument on its own terms. Technology has made production far cleaner than was **ever **thought possible, tiny footprints is all that is necessary now — by use of such methods as horizontal drilling, **and **carbon capture and storage, and enhanced recovery. **Technology has come such a long way. Again, they don’t get it. They need to understand the science behind all of this today. **And those cleaner, safer technologies are far likelier to be used in the US and Canada than in China, India or other developing nations. **It’s here, well there — they will be produced in environmentally friendly manners and protecting the workers. Much more likely here than in these developing countries. **
So policies that forego domestic production don’t protect our environment. They simply accelerate and reward dirtier and more dangerous methods of production elsewhere, in countries that apply few, if any, environmental** or workplace** safeguards. While our opponents like to posture as defenders of the environment, in practice their refusal to support more domestic production does nothing more than harm. It ultimately harms our environment. It doesn’t do any good.
**And **as for our coal resources — let me get back to coal –- America has more coal than the oil riches in all of Saudi Arabia. I don’t know if a lot of people have realized that. Burning coal cleanly is a challenge though, it’s a challenge of practical problem-solving and human ingenuity though — and we have no shortage of those in America either. So, in a McCain administration, we will commit two billion dollars each year, until 2024, to clean-coal research, **and **development, and deployment. **We won’t just be talking about it. We’ll be doing something about it to find the solution that we need to reach clean coal technology that can be—the technique can be deployed and we can live with this. **We will refine the techniques and equipment. **And we’ll **deliver not only electricity but jobs to some of the hardest hit areas hardest hit by these economic **times. **
And in the end, with or without the green light from Joe the Six-Term Senator, **we’ll **make clean coal a reality. **And it is **for the sake of our nation’s security and our prosperity **that **we need **these **energy resources from America, **and they can be **brought to you by American ingenuity, and **they’ve got to be **produced by American workers.
**And it is **to meet America’s great energy challenge that John and I will adopt that “all of the above” approach that’s needed. In our administration, that will mean harnessing alternative sources, like wind and solar. The great job you are doing here with solar. Geothermal. We have many, many alternative sources that have not yet been tapped into and allowed to become economic and reliable. **That’s the key, of course, is the reliability of these alternative sources. We’ve got to **end subsidies and tariffs that drive prices up though, and provide tax credits, is what we’ll do, indexed to low automobile carbon emissions. And we’ve gotta encourage Americans to be part of the solution, too, by taking steps in their every day lives to conserve more and use less. And you don’t hear a lot of talk about that also, the need for all of us to conserve these energy sources, especially, obviously, the non-renewable sources of energy. We’ll control greenhouse gas emissions by giving American businesses new incentives and new rewards to seek, instead of just giving them new taxes to pay and new orders **that they must **follow, so says government.
On energy policy, our opponents are always talking about things **that we can– **we cannot do. **This is what you always here from our opponents, things that you cannot do **because our own government won’t let us. When you look over the energy plans of Barack Obama **and Joe Biden **and **the **allies that they have there in Congress, it is just a long, labored agenda of inaction. **And we cannot afford this, not a day longer. **And it’s the same agenda of inaction **that **we could expect under a one-party rule of Obama, and Pelosi, and Reid. **And I say that, again, based on their record of inaction. Yes. **They’re always talking about things **that **we **cannot **do in America. Stifling the entrepreneurial spirit with more government control, saying– saying to the American public why we can’t do something. Why we can’t produce and why refineries can’t build, and why we can’t approve more plants, **and **coal why we cannot use that, and why we cannot master new technologies. As John McCain has observed, for a guy’s who’s slogan is “Yes we can,” Barack Obama’s energy plan sure has a whole lot of “No we can’t.”
And, again and again, again and again, our opponents say that drilling will not solve all of America’s energy problems — as if we all didn’t know that already. But the fact that drilling won’t solve every problem is no excuse to do nothing at all.
No, we cannot “drill our way out of the problem” entirely. But this is America, and it’s the most resourceful country on earth, and we can drill, and refine, and mine, and enrich, and reprocess, and invent, and build, and conserve, and grow, we can use every available means to regain our independence. But, we first have to say, yes we can do it. Yes.
And the mission of energy security will demand great things of our country. It will require commitment, and resolve, and political courage. It will require that bipartisan approach that John McCain is known for. **He is the maverick of the Senate because he’s been able to have the courage, the guts to manifest his commitment to working across the aisle to fix the problems that America has and face the challenges. He’s known as the maverick, and he’s got the scars to prove it because he takes shots from his own party and from the other party also. But it’s gonna take that kind of courageous, wise, experienced approach to meet America’s energy challenges, and that’s what John McCain is all about. **John McCain is a man who knows something about hard missions, and about overcoming dangers and keeping faith with his country. He has always put his country first. And the stakes are so high, and complete success, it’s not gonna come quickly on this front. But I can promise you this: That unless we begin this mission now, today, the only change we’re gonna see is a change for the worse. And when we do succeed in the hard work ahead, our children will live a more prosperous life in a more prosperous country, and they’re gonna live in a safer world. That’s what energy independence will bring us. **So, I thank you for being here today. I’m excited about the possibilities that we have and putting together the pieces in this puzzle, putting it all together, the big picture for America, the possibilities that we have, the potential in America to finally getting our nation firmly on that path towards energy independence. In this arena, also, I promise you, John McCain and I will not let you down. Thank you and God bless you. Thank you. Thank you, guys. **