"Barack Obama and Joe Biden oppose new drilling at home and oppose nuclear power."
Republican National Committee on Tuesday, August 26th, 2008 in a statement on the RNC Web site
They oppose drilling but not nuclear energy
In a memo written for the second day of the convention, the RNC focused on Obama's economic plan.
The Democrats' speeches "will also touch on Barack Obama's plan to achieve energy independence. Yet, Barack Obama and Joe Biden oppose new drilling at home and oppose nuclear power. Either they don't understand the seriousness of the energy situation or they aren't giving straight answers to the American people," the RNC opined.
It's true that Obama and Biden have opposed expanded offshore drilling in the past. However, Obama has said that he would accept drilling as part of a compromise bill that enacts broader energy reforms. We weren't able to find any public statements from Biden on the energy compromise.
The RNC is on considerably shakier ground when it says Obama and Biden oppose nuclear power.
Obama has said that nuclear power "has to be part of our energy mix" in attaining energy independence, though it does require environmental safeguards. He's also said that he hopes developing technology will provide better answers to the problem of nuclear waste storage.
Biden's position is similar; he has said nuclear energy "must be part of our future" but that "serious safety, security and waste issues must be solved."
Having concerns about safety, though, doesn't mean you're against nuclear energy, and Obama and Biden have specifically said that they support nuclear energy. Obama's position on drilling has some flexibility as well. Given that much of the RNC's statement is not correct, we rate their statement Barely True.
Editor's note: This statement was rated Barely True when it was published. On July 27, 2011, we changed the name for the rating to Mostly False.
Published: Wednesday, August 27th, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.
Sources:Republican National Committee, Not Ready '08 Morning Memo: Obama's Economic Disaster , Aug. 26, 2008
Joe Biden Senate Web site, Biden Lays Out Steps for Clean, Secure Energy Future; Responds to Bush's Announcement that He Will Lift Ban on Off-Shore Drilling , July 14, 2008
St. Petersburg Times, Obama may be shifting toward backing oil drilling off Florida , Aug. 2, 2008
New York Times, Democratic Debate transcript, Las Vegas , Nov. 15, 2007
League of Conservation Voters, Joe Biden 2008 candidate questionnaire
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