During a radio interview, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) called out President Joe Biden over his trip to Saudi Arabia, accusing the president of “begging and bowing down” to the royals in a desperate attempt to increase the supply of oil.
Speaking with host John Catsimatidis on his WABC 770 AM radio show in an interview that aired on Sunday, the Kentucky Republican blasted Biden for his decision to beg the Middle Eastern nation for help in lowering gas prices.
“Rather than traveling to Saudi Arabia, [Biden] should be traveling to Texas or North Dakota, and he should be… asking our country to ramp up supply instead of begging and bowing down to the Saudis and asking them to bump up their supply,” Paul said.
“It’s not only bad economics, but it’s embarrassing for him to be over there… begging them for more oil. I couldn’t be more opposed to what he’s doing,” he added.
Paul went on to accuse the Biden administration of doing everything in its power to reduce the supply of oil, taking several deliberate actions since the president took office that ultimately led to gas prices skyrocketing to more than $5 per gallon on average in June, a historic high.
“Everything the Biden administration has done has been to reduce the supply. They’ve banished pipelines. They’ve banished drilling permits. They’ve banished drilling leases. They’ve stopped the expansion of drilling into ANWR, which is a portion of Alaska, which has enough oil to make us completely energy independent, probably for 100 years,” the GOP senator said, referring to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
On his first day in office, Biden signed an executive order temporarily suspending oil and gas drilling leases which were granted under former President Donald Trump. That order was later made permanent by the Interior Department in June of 2021.
Paul also pointed out that the Biden administration’s “all-out attack” on the oil and gas industry has had the effect of scaring investors away.
“It shouldn’t shock any of us that the price [of oil] has shot through the roof. There is a way to fix this. They could immediately start encouraging production [in America],” the Kentucky Republican said.
Biden arrived back at the White House on Sunday after his four-day trip to Israel and Saudi Arabia.
His trip to Saudi Arabia made headlines both for his begging the royals for oil and for a viral moment in which he fist-bumped Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, despite the role the royal played in the death of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.
Biden claimed that begging for oil was not the purpose of his visit, but comments made to reporters last Friday following his meeting with Salman indicate otherwise.
“I’m doing all I can to increase the supply for the United States of America, which I expect to happen,” the president said. “The Saudis share that urgency and based on our discussions today, I expect we will see further steps in the coming weeks.”