Apr 2 2024

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Thom Tillis and his colleagues recently sent a letter to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Lina Khan calling on the FTC to conduct a fair and unbiased review of recently announced oil and gas mergers after Senate Democrats requested the FTC investigate these major energy acquisitions by citing misleading and false allegations.

Senate Democrats have urged the FTC to abuse its authority by arguing that such investigations must be used to stop these companies from discrediting “climate science,” “subverting our democratic processes,” and “frustrate self-governing” through more oil and gas production. 

“On November 1, 2023, twenty-three Senate Democrats sent you a letter ‘urging you to investigate the recently announced oil and gas mergers.’ We write to urge the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to follow the law and the facts in its review of the recently announced oil and gas industry mergers. As is the case with any merger review, including those in the industrial sector, mergers must be assessed under a fair and unbiased standard grounded in sound economics and law that protects American consumers, and does not impose policy preferences to further political ends,” the senators wrote

“It is precisely because these transactions will produce more oil and gas that our Democratic colleagues oppose them. Such actions, according to our colleagues, are ‘subverting our democratic processes’ and ‘frustrate self-governing.’ However, our colleagues offer no similar hyperbole about the recent unilateral actions of the Biden administration to raise energy costs, limit competition, and reduce investment and access for the U.S. oil and gas industry. Instead, it appears Senate Democrats view antitrust enforcement as an opportunity to impose the same anti- fossil fuel policy preferences to the detriment of the American people - policy preferences that Congress has not authorized the Federal Trade Commission to regulate,” the senators continued. 

“We respectfully request that the FTC conduct a fair and unbiased review of these mergers that is rooted in the facts, economic realities, and precedent. The oil and gas industry (like any other industry) should not be subject to unfair investigations or heightened antitrust scrutiny in order to further a political agenda that seeks the end of fossil fuel production. We expect the Commission to exercise its authorities with adherence to the rule of law and respect for due process, not partisan pressures and policy preferences,” the senators concluded

Full text of the letter is available HERE.