Thursday, March 22, 2012

Romney Used to Like High Gas Prices

Romney appears to be someone who conforms to his surroundings. If he's governor of a democratic state, he's reasonable and moderate. If he became president with a republican controlled (with a conservative bent) House and Senate --  watch out.

Curiously overlooked, though, is just what a shift this rhetoric is from the approach that Romney took on the issue of gas prices while governor of Massachusetts. Befitting his profile as a moderate Republican who cared about the environment, Governor Romney responded to price spikes by describing them as the natural result of global market pressures and by calling for increases in fuel efficiency—the same approach that he now derides Obama for taking as president.

At moments, Romney went so far as to make high gas prices out to be a welcome reality for the foreseeable future, one that people needed to learn to live with. When lieutenant governor Kerry Healey, a fellow Republican, called for suspending the state’s 23.5 cent gas tax during a price spike in May 2006, Romney rejected the idea, saying it would only further drive up gasoline consumption. “I don’t think that now is the time, and I’m not sure there will be the right time, for us to encourage the use of more gasoline,” Romney said, according to the Quincy Patriot Ledger’s report at the time. “I’m very much in favor of people recognizing that these high gasoline prices are probably here to stay.” more at The New Republic
Frankly, higher gas prices would be good for the nation -- maybe not right now -- but in the long run, for many reasons. It will encourage people to drive more economical cars, it will spare our environment, it will inspire companies to develop cleaner energy at a faster pace. Fact is, fossil fuels are finite and they have a negative effect on the environment.
But oil and gas companies own Congress, especially the republican members, which is why they like to talk up fossil fuels.
Mitt also opposed Obama's strategy to get bin Laden.

And we all knew this was coming: