(CNSNews.com) – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says federal dollars should be spent on energy research, not on crony capitalism. He also said the regulatory system should be used to ensure safety, not to restrict energy production.
Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, spoke on his energy policy Thursday at Watson Truck & Supply Co. in Hobbs, N.M., where he was critical of the regulatory structure under the Obama administration.
“Sometimes I have the impression that the whole regulatory attitude of the administration is trying to stop oil and gas and coal, that they don’t want those sources and instead, they want to get those things so expensive and so rare that wind and solar become highly cost effective and efficient,” Romney said.
“Look, I like wind and solar like the next person, but I don’t want the law to be used to stop the production of oil and gas and coal, and I’m going to get the law to finally be transparent with timelines, statutes of limitations and stop using these legal suits to try and stop the production of energy in this country,” he said.
Romney also said he would put states in charge of issuing permits for energy exploration on federal lands and increasing offshore drilling. He said his energy plan would create 3 million new jobs in the United States.
Romney also highlighted the number of failed green energy companies that the Obama administration made loans or grants to. In some cases, these companies either went into bankruptcy or used the federal money to create jobs overseas.
Romney said under his administration, federal money would go toward research to make America more energy efficient, not to companies.
“I want to promote energy innovation. Now, what do I mean by that? We’ve watched the president follow a different path. He’s taken federal dollars, your money, to invest in companies, solar companies, wind companies,” Romney said.
“About $90 billion in so-called green jobs – $90 billion has gone to this. Look, the government of the United States is not a very good venture capitalist,” Romney continued. “He’s picking winners and losers. Mostly, he’s been picking losers. You know, Solyndra and Ener1 and Fisker, there’s a long list of businesses he’s investing in.
“I don’t want the government investing in companies, particularly companies of his campaign contributors. I want instead to have our government investing in basic science and research, finding new sources of energy, also finding new ways to be more efficient in our use of energy,” he added.