McCarthy rips Newsom for leaving California reliant on Russian oil, funding Putin's war machine

California Democrat governor "reduced us by about 50,000 barrels a day," said the House speaker. "He replaced that with Russian oil. So he was paying Putin to rebuild his military, and he's the number one provider of oil in California."

Updated: April 1, 2023 - 11:17pm

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House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) blasted his home state governor's energy plan in an interview with Just the News, arguing that it's shrinking the power grid, raising prices, and paving the way for dependence on Russian oil. 

California Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom "is taking the same approach as Biden, which is picking one form of energy," McCarthy said on "The Commitment to Conservation," a Just the News special report sponsored by ClearPath, a conservative clean energy group. "Our grid has actually shrunk. Our costs are higher. And then when we have a warm summer, you know what he does? He goes back to coal and even pollutes more emissions."

In the interview, which aired earlier this week on Real America's Voice, McCarthy was joined by his top lieutenant on energy and climate issues, Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.). The two used the appearance to make a closing argument for passage of the House GOP's top legislative priority, H.R. 1, also known as the Lower Energy Costs Act. 

The California governor has prioritized rapidly transitioning his state from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

"Firstly, he would tell you that you could only buy electric cars, and one week later, he told you that you couldn't charge them," said McCarthy.  

During the summer of 2022, California was hit with blackouts due in part to the state's self-imposed dependence on renewable energy sources, according to industry leaders.

In an interview with Just the News last summer, Jim Patterson, a member of the California State Assembly and the vice chair of that body's Utilities and Energies Committee, emphasized that the state was "overreliant on wind and solar."

Newsom's headlong rush to abandon fossil fuels for renewables has had the unintended consequence of leaving California reliant on Russian oil and swelling the coffers of Vladimir Putin, McCarthy observed. 

Newsom "went and attacked the energy production in America," McCarthy said. "In California we produce 20% less oil. So you know what he did? He went and reduced us by about 50,000 barrels a day. He replaced that with Russian oil. So he was paying Putin to rebuild his military, and he's the number one provider of oil in California."

California imported more than 18 million barrels of oil from Russia in 2021, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune

The Lower Energy Costs Act would not only reduce carbon emissions, promote U.S. energy independence and benefit U.S. consumers, it would also weaken Russia in the international arena and strengthen global security, McCarthy argued. 

"Just using American natural gas makes the world not only lower in emissions, but safer," he said. "Our natural gas is so much cleaner than Russian natural gas. And think about the difference where Europe got dependent upon Russia [for oil] and what Putin did with that money or what he's doing now in Ukraine — it all stems around energy policy."