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In the past weeks the political campaign has focused in social issues like Medicare, abortion and rape; all of these are areas in which President Obama has an advantage over Mitt Romney. According to the last AP-GfK poll, President Obama is seen much more capable of handling social issues. But now Mitt Romney has tried to focus in his energy plan to boost his economic plan.
Mitt Romney is now trying to refocus the national debate to economic issues in which Obama is weaker. The high unemployment rate has been one of Obama’s weaknesses; the Obama campaign has released a new ad called “Clear Choice,” which features former President Bill Clinton, saying that this election is an opportunity to decide which candidate would be able to get the country back to work.
Clinton explains the Republican plan intends to cut taxes on the wealthy and get the country back to the regulation that got the country in so many problems. On the other hand, Clinton explained that Obama’s plan would rebuild the country investing in innovation and creating jobs. Clinton added that the plan would only work with a strong middle class, such as the one that existed when he was president.
Romney is now working on his energy plan, which he says would be able to create three million jobs by 2020. It would also open more areas for drilling off the coast in two swing states the Republicans lost in the 2008 election: North Carolina and Virginia.
Romney will be traveling to different states with his energy proposals, so voters will have the opportunity to hear them. His plan is supposed to result in $1 trillion in revenue for federal, state and local governments. Also, Romney intends to give each state the liberty to establish the form of energy production they want on federal lands, which is quite different from Obama’s administration energy policy in which the federal government currently controls these lands.
Romney’s plan will have a lot of opposition in Congress and will lead to protests from different environmental groups, especially if the oil drilling is done in the mid-Atlantic, where it is currently banned. In order to prevent these protests, the energy production would be banned in areas that are currently designated as off-limits. Romney has a big plan to finally execute the Keystone XL pipeline project, which is a pipeline that would run from Canada to Texas refineries.
Mitt Romney has recently received almost $7 million from oil executives from fundraisers in Texas. During a fundraiser in Arkansas, Romney promised that “”North America will be energy-independent by the last year of my second term.”
Steve Holland in a Huffington Post article explains that the “Republicans are eager to make greater use of the U.S. energy supply to increase jobs for Americans suffering amid an 8.3 percent unemployment rate. They would curtail some federal regulations to permit more production.”
Holland, speaking about the environmental controversy that Romney’s plan could cause, said “the plan makes little mention of climate change or greenhouse gases. Romney policy adviser Oren Cass said Romney supports green energy and government spending on energy research, but opposes loan guarantees for green companies.”
Image Courtesy of Gage Skidmore