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The oil industry and its backers are coming out swinging against proposals pushed by Democratic presidential candidates aiming to virtually eliminate oil and gas.

Why it matters: The emphasis, made at an annual luncheon attended by hundreds of energy executives, shows how worried the industry is about the potential impact of such proposals, including fracking bans.

What they're saying:

"At the extreme, we hear promises on the 2020 campaign trail to ban fracking, nationwide and forever. Here's a glimpse at that vision: Millions of jobs lost, a spike in household energy costs, a manufacturing downturn, less energy security. In the short run, a fracking ban in America would quickly invite a global recession. You don't abolish the most dynamic asset of the world's leading energy supplier without severe consequences."
— Mike Sommers, CEO and president, American Petroleum Institute, a nonpartisan trade association

Sommers told reporters after the event that a report the group is going to release in the next week will show that such a move would cause a global recession.

Reality check: No evidence exists to back up the claim a U.S. ban on fracking, a controversial oil and gas extraction technique, would lead to a global recession. Such a move would likely hurt the economy and reverse the trend toward more energy security, though the extent to which that would occur is unclear.

  • A September note from consulting and research firm Rapidan Energy Group projects that if a ban were imposed on Jan. 1, 2022, U.S. oil production from shale formations would fall by more than 3 million barrels per day within a year.

But, but, but: A Democratic president would need Congress to ban fracking nationally, and given the economic benefits of cheap oil and gas, such a move is unlikely to get enough support (something Sommers mentioned on Tuesday).

  • A de facto ban on federal lands would be more likely, but most production has been on private lands.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Exclusive: GOP Leader McCarthy asks to meet with Biden about the border

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy at CPAC. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has requested a meeting with President Biden to discuss the rising numbers of unaccompanied migrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border, in a letter sent on Friday.

Why it matters: Biden is facing criticism from the right and the left as agency actions and media reports reveal spiking numbers of migrant children overwhelming parts of the U.S. immigration system. Recent data shows an average of 321 kids being referred to migrant shelters each day, as Axios reported.

Vaccine hesitancy drops, but with partisan divide

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

69% of the public intends to get a COVID vaccine or already has, up significantly from 60% in November, according to a report out Friday from the Pew Research Center.

Yes, but: The issue has become even more partisan, with 56% of Republicans who say they want or have already received a coronavirus vaccine compared to 83% of Democrats.

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