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Friday, November 18, 2005

Barbara Boxer on the Oil Company Lies

Last week, I told the oil company executives that their sacrifice was nothing. This week, I tell these executives, we can believe nothing they said.

Not only did the executives say that they didn't attend meetings that they did in fact attend -- because they tried to hide the fact that they essentially wrote this Administration's energy policy -- but Shell Oil, in direct response to a question from me, lied to my face about an issue that I worked on with Senator Ron Wyden and the Attorney General of California.

When I asked Mr. Hofmeister, President of Shell Oil Company, why his company told the people of California there were no buyers for a refinery that they were closing that produced 2 percent of California's gas, he said at the hearing: �We'd shopped the refinery around unofficially but did not find buyers. We then decided to close it.�

That stands in direct contradiction to what Shell's President wrote on April 13, 2004. She wrote:
�...We have not expended time or resources in an attempt to find a buyer, and do not intend to do so.�

And, in May 3, 2004, she said:
�...we believe no buyer will be interested in running the facility as a going concern, and therefore, did not seek one.�

Why is this so important?

Because I believe there was a conscious effort on the part of Shell Oil to purposefully reduce the supply of gasoline when Californians were already paying the highest prices in the nation.

We need to bring these oil executives back before the Committee, swear them in -- as Senator Maria Cantwell and I tried to do -- and get the truth for the American people.



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