The Hill's push to open up U.S. oil exports cleared another hurdle Thursday as a Senate committee advanced a bill that would repeal a ban on crude-oil exports.
In a party-line vote, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee passed a bill from Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski that would allow for the export of all crude oil and condensate produced in the U.S. The bill would also provide for revenue sharing for offshore drilling in her home state of Alaska, off the Atlantic Coast, and in the Gulf of Mexico.
The vote comes just a day after House Speaker John Boehner said he supported lifting the export ban, the first time he'd weighed in on the topic, signaling more momentum for a House push to lift the ban.
Murkowski and other Republicans have said that lifting the ban is a necessity, given America's booming oil output. The ban was put in place in the aftermath of the 1970s Arab oil embargo, which drove up gas prices, but industry groups say it's now out of date as a result of the fracking boom.
The nuclear deal with Iran has also lent momentum to the exports discussion, since it would lift economic and export sanctions on Iran and could lead to more Iranian crude flooding the market. Industry groups and supporters say that the U.S. should likewise be able to compete, rather than being left out of the global market.