The Impact of Energy on the 2012 Election

The race for the White House is heating up as we hear President Obama and Governor Romney make their case for why they should be President of the United States.  Both parties have been campaigning relentlessly in multiple cities across America for the past couple of months on the direction they would like the country to take.

Obama and Romney both have debated over various topics that are important issues in the minds of voters as well as the government such as foreign policy, economy, education, civil rights, terrorism, health care, and energy.

Voters have been vocal enough to state their opinion on having clean air and clean energy policies.  While this may not be as much of a front page issue such as foreign policy and the recent events in Libya, both Presidential candidates have made efforts to be prepared to provide explanations on their energy policies moving forward.

So where do both candidates stand when it comes to energy?

Here are the following points for both Obama and Romney:

President Obama

* A second term would mirror many of the first term policies and initiatives.

* Has raised fuel economy standards and would continue making efficiency gains using fewer permits than President Bush when he took office.

* When it comes to offshore drilling, President Obama has opened new areas in the Gulf of Mexico and looked into preliminary drilling near the Arctic.  (In some cases, a surety bond would be required for offshore drilling in various states.  For more information on bonding, click here

* Would like to eliminate the $4 billion in annual tax breaks that are given to the oil industry each year.  Industry executives defend these tax breaks as dispersed through various industries and not just oil.

* Will look to stop dispersing direct grants to renewable energy companies.  Obama would look to replace this by supporting wind and solar technology companies in the form of tax credits.

* Stated he will reduce emissions of greenhouse gases by implementing new policies on coal-fired power plants while raising standards to higher levels for fuel efficiency cars.

Governor Romney

If elected, many of the proposals that Governor Romney has planned stress the importance of energy independence.

* Romney has plans for a “level playing field” when it comes to oil.  Did not provide specifics, but just like most Americans, want to reduce the U.S. dependency on foreign oil.

* Wants to have more land and offshore drilling with plans to drill off the water in the east and west.

* Proposes more state control, which equates to faster permits on actions.

* In contrast to President Obama’s initiatives on the oil industry, Governor Romney would not propose taking the tax breaks away.

* Will no longer give direct grants to renewable energy companies.  In addition, Romney does not want to support new energy technologies in the form of tax credits as Obama has proposed.

* Governor Romney wishes to roll back some of the emissions regulations as they were handed down by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Both candidates clearly have different energy policies and strategies for the future of America.  On November 6th, 2012, voters will have a chance to voice their opinion on the best candidate to lead them for the next four years.

Kent Yuen is a writer for JW Surety Bonds, the largest surety bond agency in the country.


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