Earlier this morning, I sent a letter to President Bush urging him to begin increasing the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in preparation for a potential Venezuelan oil embargo against the United States.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has repeatedly threatened to cut off oil shipments to the United States in the wake of ExxonMobil’s success in winning several pre-emptive legal injunctions from U.S. and international courts freezing up to $12 billion in oil assets controlled by the Venezuelan government.

Time and again, Chavez has made it crystal clear that free markets are not welcome in his socialist revolution.  The United States government must firmly protect our country against a threatened oil embargo from Venezuela and stand against Chavez’s march on freedom.  While our economy can withstand an embargo, the Venezuelan economy cannot.  The United States must continue to let the Venezuelan people know we stand with them and against dictators like Chavez.