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Begich Votes to Open ANWR


U.S. Sen. Mark Begich today voted in favor of an amendment to the Senate’s highway bill that included language opening Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil and gas development. The amendment failed.

Begich released the following statement after the vote:

“As a supporter of opening ANWR, I voted for this amendment because we must take real steps to increase domestic energy production. I am disappointed others in the Senate junked it up with a bunch of other provisions, as this is no way to address gas prices and our long-term energy needs.

“If we want to get serious about an energy plan that includes ANWR and other Alaska oil and gas resources, let’s get to it. But an amendment to an important transportation bill that is put forward simply to divide the body is not a good way to conduct public policy.

“I’m looking forward to passing a transportation bill that will invest millions of dollars in Alaska and billions nationwide, creating jobs and boosting the economy. Meanwhile, I’ll continue to work on meaningful energy legislation that increases our national and economic security and brings much-needed jobs to Alaskans and across the country.”

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