Why is it that Republicans can’t seem to wrap their brains around their tongues when it comes to the environment?
At a town hall meeting in Hopkinton, NH today, Mitt Romney said (as reported by the Manchester Liberal Examiner),
“I believe we should have exacting standards on those that pollute our air and water,” Romney said, before going on to acknowledge the role the Environmental Protection Agency’s plays in protecting the nation’s natural resources.
Romney stopped short of calling for the EPA to be shut down, a move other Republican presidential candidates have been clamoring for on the campaign trail, but still spoke of the EPA as “… an agency that stops the development of our economy and kills jobs.”
“That I won’t allow,” he vowed.
“And so, when the Environmental Protection Agency says that they’re going to regulate how much carbon dioxide is emitted, I’m saying that’s beyond the scope and responsibility of the Environmental Protection Agency,” Romney explained. “That is not something I would support.”
First, we don’t like the “pollute” and “polluter” terms. EPA and the enviros use them as a means of bashing business. Recently asked at a Congressional hearing what she meant by the term “polluter”, EPA chief Lisa Jackson said that anybody that emits anything into the environment is a “polluter.”
So Romney’s threat to implement retaliatory-sounding “exacting standards” on that vague and often loaded term is worrisome — and Romney is a believer in global warming and has accused a coal plant of “killing” people.
While Romney is nail-on-the-head correct that EPA is a jobs-killer, we wonder whether he would actually do anything about the EPA. Keep in mind that his 52-point jobs plan doesn’t specifically mention the EPA or environmental regulation.
Finally, although Romney repeats here that the EPA should not be regulating greenhouse gases, he conspicuously hasn’t given up on the notion that someone should.
As a political reality, no self-respecting comrade enviro will be voting for any Republican over Obama — so there no point in Romney trying to gain green support.
A further reality is that no self-respecting and responsible American worried about the state of our country will vote for Obama over any Republican. So Romney should just speak plainly and in detail about what he would do to rein in the rogue EPA.