What a difference a week makes!
Only a few days ago, the consensus was that President Barack Obama had won the presidential race. Now, Democratic pundits are claiming that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney will kill Big Bird if elected. Romney is now leading in many polls, and some safe blue states are appearing competitive.
I am never one to predict events. When someone offered to bet on the election several months ago, I refused. Any event could happen between now and Election Day that could alter the race drastically. A war with Iran, riots in China, large stock sell-offs, etc.
However, assuming no big events occur, here is how Romney can now seal the election. Energy independence is key to America in so many ways. A few years ago, the idea sounded crazy. With the sudden boom of natural shale gas, this is a real possibility in the near future.
Although the economy continues to lag, it would be in much worse shape if not for the shale gas revolution. Obama has been lucky to ride the wave, just as President Bill Clinton benefited from the Tech boom.
According to Moody’s Investors Service, over 35 percent of the jobs created in the past 10 years have been in the shale gas industry. While Obama claims 1 million total jobs were added in 2010, close to 600,000 shale jobs were created that year. This has all been despite Obama’s efforts to promote his failed green energy policies.
If we had a more pro-energy president, many more jobs could have been created in the shale industry. Romney should point this out, especially as Obama tries to claim credit for (mediocre) job numbers during his presidency.
Many candidates exaggerate their promises while running. However, Romney could make a legitimate claim that he would make America energy independent if elected. He can state the various benefits from this policy:
• Millions of new jobs created
• An America no longer dependent on Saudi Arabia for its energy needs
• An America that could become a net exporter to the world
• A stronger overall economy, as dollars flow into America
• A stronger military, which does not need to guard oil supplies in the Middle East
This policy would appeal to all but the most extreme leftist Americans. Obviously, the details are more intricate than can be summed up in a few sentences, but the keys to continue this revolution are as follows:
• Encourage and allow more natural gas drilling
• Instead of subsidizing failed green energy ventures, possibly fund a plan to encourage cars and gas stations to use natural gas
• Allow more drilling offshore and on federal lands
If Romney lays out a plan as described above with a bit more detail on the practical applications, he can put the nail in Obama’s coffin and secure the race today.
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