Rep. West Stumps for Relief at Pump

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF “YOUR WORLD”: All right, well, prices up here and profits are down over here. Lowe’s feeling the heat, as its do-it-yourself customers take the hit.

And now the president of the United States is apparently seeing the light, now promising to speed up drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska.

But Allen West is saying, too little, too late, the Florida Congressman spending all day today pumping gas to pump even more drilling with his constituents in West Palm Beach.

Congressman, how long you been pumping gas today?

REP. ALLEN WEST, R- FLA.: We only did it for about maybe 25, 30 minutes, Neil.

How are you doing today?

CAVUTO: I’m fine, sir.

How did it go, just the pumping-the-gas part? Because I heard that it -- you had your moments.

WEST: Well, I had a moment. I’m not used to pumping gas into a Jaguar. I’m much more comfortable with a Humvee.


WEST: So, I have to work through some mechanical issues there.

But it still went well. And the major thing that you’re hearing from people is that they’ve had to adjust their way of life and certain routines. You know, people are paying attention to where they’re driving, the routes that they’re taking.

People are, you know, trying to just top off, at least take a tank down to half-a-tank, then fill it back up. And it’s really affecting how people -- the American people down here in Congressional district 22 are going about their everyday way of business, to include our small business owners.

CAVUTO: Now, the Jaguar -- or Jaguar, or whatever they call it -- I’m convinced that was ridden by a Democrat just to mess with you.


CAVUTO: But, in all seriousness, I’m wondering -- I’m wondering Congressman, whether the president’s efforts over the weekend to open up more drilling go a long way toward addressing your concerns. Or no?

WEST: Well, I’m pretty happy to see that the president will follow the lead of the House Republicans that brought forth several pieces of legislation in the past week that talked about opening up some of these offshore and also on-land leasing areas, as well as getting rid of a lot of these permit moratoriums that we have. But the thing that I look at is the president who went down to Brazil and gave them $2 billion of American taxpayer money so that they could do oil exploration and also told them that we would be one of their best customers.

I think we need to be producing, consuming, and maybe even exporting our own full spectrum of energy resources right here in the United States of America.

CAVUTO: What about in your district, sir, where a lot of residents are concerned about offshore drilling, some of them of the view that this would take place only a mile or two offshore? We know in fact that it’s significantly way offshore, to the point you can’t even see it from the tallest condo building.

Nevertheless, when you raise it with them, what reaction do you get?

WEST: Well, you’re right. It’s about educating people that it is not going to be something that’s visible from the beautiful coastline and the condos that we have here along the congressional district.

But you also have to tell them that Cuba is already selling leases. One company is a Spanish company by the name of Repsol. And those plots that they’re selling, about 10 -- 10 miles outside of that international line that we have down off the Florida Keys, and if you understand slant drilling technology, the next thing you know that, at very deep drilling depths, these people can go into our Outer Continental Shelf.

And if there is some type of environmental accident that goes right into the Gulf Stream and this is ground zero, where I’m standing right now. So, the United States of America can drill safely. They can do this in the right and proper means to make sure that we protect our environments. And we should not allow anyone else to come in to our backyard and take away those resources.

CAVUTO: Did they know who you were?

WEST: Some people did. And I think some people showed up because some of the local media and talk radio put it out that I’d be here.


WEST: So, it was a pretty good treat to have a congressman pumping your gas.

CAVUTO: Now, by the way, this guy pumping gas, I still hear in all these back channels mentioned as a possible presidential candidate -- Donald Trump opting out, Mike Huckabee opting out.

WEST: Yes.

CAVUTO: What do you think of all that buzz, pumping gas or no?

WEST: Well, I think that the most important thing I can do right now, Neil, is show that I will be a very good and strong, capable legislator, a congressional representative, and an American statesman. And I think that the people down here in this district worked very hard to get me up to Congress. And I need to fulfill the promise that I made to them, that I would represent them.

So, that’s my stance. And if anything were to ever change, you would be the first to know, Neil.

CAVUTO: All right, I’m going to hold you to that, Congressman, or I’m going to pop up at that station in a Jaguar...

WEST: Absolutely.

CAVUTO: ... or whatever.

Congressman, thank you.

WEST: A Jaguar.

CAVUTO: Yes, exactly.

WEST: Thanks.

CAVUTO: Thank you very, very much.

WEST: We’ll see you down here in South Florida.

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