House Democrats are gearing up to continue their previously-postponed Big Oil investigation with a hearing slated for this month.
House Oversight Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., has tentatively scheduled the hearing for Sept. 15, nearly one year after the panel’s investigation into Big Oil’s alleged climate disinformation campaign began. Various board members from major oil and gas companies have been invited to testify during the hearing.
In mid-September 2021, Maloney and Oversight Subcommittee on Environment Chairman Ro Khanna, D-Calif., announced the investigation, which they said would take a year to complete. The probe’s first hearing, in which the committee questioned executives of ExxonMobil, Chevron, Shell and BP, took place on Oct. 28, 2021, and a second hearing with policy experts took place on Feb. 8, 2022.
In March, just weeks after Russia invaded Ukraine, sparking a global oil supply crisis, Maloney and Khanna quietly postponed indefinitely the probe’s third hearing that had been set for March 8. The hearing is the same one that is now slated for this month.
“Democrats temporarily paused their partisan show hearings to publicly attack America’s energy producers when the Biden Administration’s war on domestic energy production resulted in record high gas and energy prices for Americans,” Oversight Committee ranking member James Comer, R-Ky., told Fox News Digital in a statement.
“Democrats’ push for radical Green New Deal policies and war on America’s energy producers are harming the American people,” he added.
After Maloney and Khanna postponed the hearing in early March, Comer and Rep. Ralph Norman, R-S.C., the former ranking member on the Oversight Environment Subcommittee, blasted Democrats for saving face. Committee Republicans have consistently characterized the investigation as a political stunt.
Oil companies and trade groups have shared more than a million documents with the committee as part of the investigation. Democrats have accused them of orchestrating a decades-long campaign to misinform the public about the threats of climate change.
Gasoline prices surged to record highs between March and June. Since June, though, pump prices have fallen more than $1.20 per gallon.
“Record prices at the pump and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine underscore how domestic energy production is vital to affordable, reliable energy for the American people and our national security,” Comer continued.
“Instead to resuming their sham investigation, Democrats should instead invite Secretary Granholm to testify about how the Biden Administration plans to address the energy crisis facing Americans,” he said.
Maloney and Khanna didn’t respond to requests for comment.