Saturday, September 8, 2012

Mitt vs. Dubya: Energy Policy

If you don't believe the Tea Party has already influenced the Republican Party, I invite you to contrast Mitt's Energy proposal with George W. Bush's proposal from seven years ago.

The first section on Mitt's energy proposal is "Empower States to Control Onshore Energy Development"

  • States will be empowered to establish processes to oversee the development and production of all forms of energy on federal lands within their borders, excluding only lands specially designated off-limits
  • State regulatory processes and permitting programs for all forms of energy development will be deemed to satisfy all requirements of federal law
  • Federal agencies will certify state processes as adequate, according to established criteria that are sufficiently broad, to afford the states maximum flexibility to ascertain what is most appropriate
  • The federal government will encourage the formation of a State Energy Development Council, where states can work together along with existing organizations such as STRONGER and the IOGCC to share expertise and best management practices.
In comparison, Dubya's ambition was limited to:
direct[ing] federal agencies to work with states to encourage the building of new refineries -- on closed military facilities, for example -- and to simplify the permitting process for such construction.
In other words, where Dubya wanted to cut a little red tape at the federal level, Mitt's starting point is to dramatically reduce Washington D.C.'s role.  It's also worth noting that Mitt spends a lot less time promoting 'alternative' energy sources than the alleged oilman George W. Bush.

I might have more to say about Mitt's energy proposals in the next few days; for now, I want to point out that this is a surprisingly tenth-amendment friendly proposal to come directly from a Presidential candidate.

Don't tell me the Tea Party hasn't already had a dramatic influence on the GOP.

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