US House votes through bill to repeal oil export ban

As many predicted, the US House of Representatives on Friday voted through a bill that could repeal the country’s ban on crude oil exports, according to Reuters.

However, the size of the majority was inadequate to allow the bill to override the threat of veto by President Barack Obama.

According to House rules the bill would have needed 280 votes for that override but it got instead 261 against 159 opposed.

The Obama administration prefers pro-green energy initiatives to lifting oil exports and feels the current selective approval of exports by the Commerce Department is adequate.

Proponents of the bill think it would benefit US employment figures and the economy generally.

The ban dates back to the 1970s when it was introduced as a reaction to the gasoline shortage that resulted from the policies of some Middle East producers.

President Obama may not yet need to wield the pen of veto if another form of the bill fails to come through the Senate, which is much less of a sure thing for its supporters than the House version of the bill was.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.
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