Turmoil for the foreseeable future in the Middle East only makes it more urgent that we do everything in our power to secure energy independence for America. America can, once again, be a net energy exporter. We have vast oil reserves off the coast of Virginia that have yet to be explored. At the moment, President Obama refuses to allow sale of the leases necessary to tap these vast oil and gas reserves. I will work with and encourage Virginia’s Congressional delegation to introduce legislation that allows Virginia to take full advantage of these resources in an environmentally responsible manner, thereby increasing both Virginia’s prosperity and the nation’s security.

Russia is leveraging Europe’s dependence on their natural gas to expand their sphere of influence and territorial ambitions. For both geopolitical and economic reasons, Congress needs to approve the exportation of natural gas today.

I will do everything in my power to support the coal industry in Virginia. We need to push back against the Environmental Protection Agency’s war against coal and other fossil fuels. We can exploit our coal safely and profitably through honest regulation that is neither the industry’s captive nor its enemy.

Fossil fuels continue to be the most practical solution for our energy needs. While I support an all-of-the-above approach –wind, solar, coal, gas, oil, nuclear– I do not want to see the government pick energy winners and losers with taxpayer subsidies and other gimmicks that cost the consumer many times more per unit than traditional sources for the same amount of energy. If there is a new source of energy promising low environmental impact and that reduces consumers’ costs, let the private sector make the necessary investments to bring that energy to market in an open, predictable, fair, but unsubsidized playing field. The government’s attempt to stifle the fossil fuel industry through regulations and taxes is a direct assault on the middle class by reducing jobs and increasing energy costs. It is not the wealthy that are affected when gas is $4 a gallon but the average citizen who has to drive thirty miles to work. I will be a strong advocate for fulfilling the potential of America’s energy resources.

— Michael Del Rosso