Muckraker: Grist on Politics

John McCain is slated to give a major policy address on energy tomorrow in Houston, Texas. In a press conference today, he tipped his hand about what that speech will include: He says he’ll call for federal limits on oil and gas exploration to be lifted, in order to allow states that want to permit exploration within their boundaries to do so.

“I think that this, and perhaps providing additional incentives for states to permit exploration off their coasts, would be very helpful in the short term in resolving our energy crisis,” said McCain.

The candidate also said he will reemphasize his support for a “gas-tax holiday” in his speech tomorrow.

Oh, and he did mention renewable energy, too: “We must embark on a national mission to eliminate our dependence on foreign oil and reduce greenhouse gases through the development of alternate energy sources.” Watch it:

According to the National Review‘s coverage, later on at the press conference someone asked McCain about drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and whether lifting drilling restrictions elsewhere is “a way of addressing conservative irritation” with his position on ANWR. He has, in the past, opposed drilling there.

McCain: “I believe ANWR is a pristine area … but I also believe lifting the moratorium on offshore drilling for oil and natural gas is a very high priority.”