news clinewatch clines fact challenged performance in winchester debate
Politics

ClineWatch: Cline’s fact-challenged performance in Winchester debate

ben cline
Ben Cline. Photo courtesy Ben Cline congressional campaign.

At the candidate forum in Winchester on Saturday, Congressman Ben Cline tried to present himself as a champion of reason and bipartisanship (standing in line for lunch with Democrats in Richmond, brewing beer with a Democratic colleague, etc.) while somehow forgetting to mention that he is a proud member (along with some of the most extreme members of Congress) of the far-right House Freedom Caucus and the proud recipient of a campaign endorsement from Donald Trump.

Cline is more interested in posing as bipartisan in front of certain audiences than he is in being bipartisan.

He proceeded to to call for more resources for law enforcement, even though he voted NO on the American Rescue Plan, which actually funds the police.

He also repeated his frequent claim that the United States is no longer “energy independent” as it supposedly was under Trump’s administration, and asserted that this was a leading cause of inflation. But according to FactCheck.org:

When politicians say that the United States was “energy independent” under former President Donald Trump, some people may get the false impression that the U.S. was 100% self-sufficient. The country still relied on foreign sources of energy, including oil.

To help meet domestic demand, the U.S. has imported oil and other forms of energy from abroad, including from Russia, for many years. And to some energy analysts, a scenario in which the U.S. relies only on the energy it produces is not likely to happen anytime soon.

Instead, those who tout this so-called “energy independence” may be referring to the fact that, on net, the country either produced more energy than it consumed, exported more energy than it imported, or, more specifically, had a greater number of exports than imports of petroleum, which includes crude oil and refined products from crude oil, such as gasoline and various fuels.

However, by any of those definitions, the U.S. was still “energy independent” in 2021 under President Joe Biden — contrary to claims made by Republicans who have suggested otherwise.

Sorry, Congressman. Those are the facts.

Gene Zitver is the author of ClineWatch.

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