REPORT: Biden Turns To Venezuelan Dictator For Oil After Canceling US Lease Sales

WASHINGTON (Daily Caller) — The Biden administration is expected to soon announce it would ease sanctions on Venezuelan oil amid the ongoing energy crisis, several media outlets reported.

The federal government will ease “some” of the energy sanctions on Venezuela, two senior administration officials told CNN. In addition, U.S. oil corporation Chevron will be allowed to enter into negotiations with Venezuelan state-owned firm PDVSA over potential continued operations in the South American oil-rich nation.

As part of the deal, Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro agreed to open talks with opposition leader Juan Guaidó, Reuters reported.

“[The U.S. agreed to lift some sanctions] on the basis of ambitious, concrete and irreversible outcomes that empower the Venezuelan people to determine the future in their country through democratic elections,” one official told CNN. (RELATED: Gas Prices Hit All-Time High As White House Turns To Dictators For Help)

While the U.S. has pursued an aggressive sanctions regime against Venezuela for more than 15 years, in 2019 the Trump administration imposed a fresh swath of restrictions on the South American nation’s oil industry to renew pressure on Maduro, a 2021 report from the Congressional Research Service showed. Trump administration White House officials said the sanctions would reduce Venezuela’s oil exports by $11 billion.

As a result of the Trump-era sanctions, the U.S. hasn’t imported oil from Venezuela since May 2019, according to government data. The U.S. imported about 462,000 barrels of oil per day from Venezuela in 2018, and it imported 670,000 barrels per day from Russia in 2021.

Chevron has recently lobbied the federal government to remove the sanctions, according to Senate disclosures.

“Our experience buying Russian energy should have taught President Biden that buying energy from tyrants is a dangerous proposition,” Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member John Barrasso said in a statement.

“Yet President Biden continues to reward our enemies by waiving sanctions while his administration does its best to kill American energy production. Funding despots isn’t in the national interest. Supporting American energy is,” he continued.

Venezuela consistently ranks as one of the least “free” countries in the world, according to Freedom House.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration has increasingly moved to restrict further domestic oil and gas production. The Department of the Interior canceled the three remaining federal offshore oil and gas lease sales last week and dramatically scaled back the federal onshore program in April.

The average price of gasoline reached an all-time record $4.52 a gallon on Tuesday, according to AAA data.


The Daily Caller’s Thomas Catenacci contributed to the contents of this report.

WHITE HOUSE: Trump Supports the Venezuelan People’s Efforts to Restore Democracy

RECOGNIZING THE LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT OF VENEZUELA: The United States has officially recognized Juan Guaido as the Interim President of Venezuela.

  • President Trump officially recognized the President of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaido, as the Interim President of Venezuela on January 23.
    • Venezuela’s National Assembly invoked the country’s constitution to declare Nicolas Maduro illegitimate and declared the presidency vacant.
    • Other governments in the region and across the world have joined the United States in recognizing Guaido as Venezuela’s Interim President.
  • The Administration has authorized Guaido to receive Venezuelan Government assets held at the United States Federal Reserve and other insured United States financial institutions.
    • Venezuela’s legitimate government, led by Guaido, must be allowed to safeguard its assets for the benefit of the Venezuelan people.

PRESSURING MADURO AND HIS CRONIES: The United States has imposed tough sanctions on Maduro and members of his previous regime.

  • President Trump signed an Executive Order to make clear that United States sanctions continue to target Maduro and his corrupt cronies.
  • The United States will not tolerate those who seek to undermine Venezuela’s democratic institutions and loot Venezuelan resources to enrich themselves at the expense of the people.
  • The Trump Administration is blocking assets in the United States owned or controlled by Venezuela’s state-owned oil company.
    • This action will further international efforts to disconnect Maduro and his cronies from their revenue sources, while preserving critical assets for the future of Venezuela.
  • More than 100 individuals, entities, and aircraft have been designated as blocked property.
  • The United States is confident that energy markets will remain well supplied despite reduced imports of Venezuelan oil.
    • Respected forecasters like the United States Energy Information Administration expect global oil supply to exceed demand in 2019 and 2020.
    • Over the next year, United States production is forecasted to increase to an all-time high of more than 12 million barrels per day.

STANDING WITH THE VENEZUELAN PEOPLE: President Trump stands with the people of Venezuela as they demand democracy, human rights, and prosperity denied to them by Maduro. 

  • The United States continues to provide humanitarian assistance to the Venezuelan people.
    • Food and medicine have long been – and remain – exempt from our sanctions.
  • More than three million people have fled Venezuela since 2015 and the United Nations estimates that number may swell to more than 5.3 million by the end of 2019.
  • As of December 2018, there were more than 280 known political prisoners in Venezuela.
  • Venezuelans have suffered from violence at the hands of the security services, including extrajudicial killings and arbitrary arrests.
  • Mismanagement by Maduro led to hyperinflation exceeding one million percent in 2018, worsening already dire economic circumstances.                                                                                                                                                                                                                       WHITEHOUSELOGOUSETHISONE