Monday, April 22, 2024

Republican Senators Urge Fair and Unbiased Review of Oil and Gas Mergers

by BIZ Magazine

Republican senators, including Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), have called upon Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Lina Khan to ensure a fair and unbiased review of recent oil and gas mergers amidst concerns of political interference.

Sen. Kennedy, alongside Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and 34 other Republican colleagues, emphasized the importance of conducting merger reviews based on facts, economic realities, and legal precedent rather than political agendas.

The call for a fair assessment comes in response to a request from Senate Democrats on November 1, 2023, urging the FTC to investigate major energy acquisitions. The Democrats’ request was accompanied by misleading and false allegations, including claims that oil and gas companies are undermining “climate science” through their production activities.

In a joint letter to Chairwoman Khan, the Republican senators underscored the need for the FTC to uphold legal standards and avoid politicized investigations. They expressed concern that conducting probes based on unsubstantiated claims would constitute an overreach by the FTC.

The letter emphasized the necessity of assessing mergers under a fair and unbiased standard that safeguards American consumers and adheres to sound economics and law. The senators criticized their Democratic counterparts for making speculative claims about the potential impact of mergers on climate science and legislation.

Furthermore, the Republicans highlighted the importance of considering evidence demonstrating the benefits of increased oil production resulting from the mergers. They urged the FTC not to overlook the potential positive outcomes for consumers, workers, and national energy security.

In conclusion, the senators reiterated their call for the FTC to conduct a review rooted in factual evidence, economic realities, and legal precedent. They emphasized that the oil and gas industry, like any other sector, should not be subjected to unfair investigations or heightened antitrust scrutiny driven by political agendas aimed at ending fossil fuel production.

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