Oil Production Declining In Advance Of Election Day
As a reminder of just how much may swing on the outcome of the coming election, oil producers here in North Dakota are attributing a slow down in drilling to anxiety over the coming election. The oil industry says they want stable, predictable regulation, but if President Obama wins re-election and if Democrats hold the Senate by electing candidates like Heidi Heitkamp here in North Dakota what the oil industry could hope for from Washington DC isn’t stability so much as hostility.
The number of rigs drilling in the state continues to slide.
188 are operating in North Dakota, down from a peak of 218 four months ago.
The closer we get to election day, the lower the rig count goes.
Is there a correlation???
“I think the industry feels this is a vital election, determining how we are going to move forward and whether we are going to move forward on energy security for the country, whether we are going to move forward on an affordable and stable supply of oil and natural gas and coal and all of our natural resources or if we are going to be restricted in doing so,” says Mike Smith with QEP Resources.
Smith says the election is only one factor for the slow down going on in North Dakota.
Smith says, “decisions that policy makers make at state and federal level have a great impact on maybe not whether we are operating but how much we allocate in capitol to those areas. It does have an impact to how much going to do.”
Blu Hulsey with Continental Resources says, “As we talk about regulation, because we are such a heavily regulated industry the uncertainty is certainly an issue for us. We would like to get policy makers in office that are pro-energy and see what’s going on in ND and support that.”
This explains why Heitkamp has worked so hard all election season to distance herself from President Obama and her party, even going so far as to say that she doesn’t care about her party’s platform. Heitkamp knows that the agenda of the President she once said was “awesome,” not to mention the agenda of her party, is bad for North Dakota’s oil industry and thus bad for the state.
But the truth is that Democrats are working hard to elect Heitkamp. The DSCC has poured millions into North Dakota’s Senate race. Majority Leader Harry Reid has contributed thousands to Heitkamp’s campaign directly, and his “super PAC” has poured millions into independent advertising attacking Berg and supporting Heitkamp. They’re not doing this to bring Heitkamp to Washington to be an obstacle to their agenda.
They’re doing it because they know that, when needed, Heitkamp will absolutely toe the party’s line.Tags: bakken, Barack Obama, harry reid, Heidi Heitkamp, North Dakota News, oil, Rick Berg