Wildcat is in a playful mood today, and after a week of tuning into Republican National Convention (RNC) and Democratic National Convention (DNC) speeches over lunch, we have composed a special US election-themed ‘Match the Pairs’ game for you.
The rules are simple. Match the speaker to the sound bite. If you’re not familiar with certain speakers, try and match the quote to a political party.
1. “We must not allow the chance to attain energy independence to slip from our grasp. We are blessed with a gift of oil and gas resources here in North America, and we must develop them. We can develop them sensitively, we can develop them securing our environment, but we must develop them. And we have the ingenuity to develop alternatives sources of energy.”
2. “[My running mate] and I have five steps. First, by 2020, North America will be energy independent by taking inventories of our oil, are coal, our gas, our nuclear, and renewables.”
3. “For you see, we see a future – we really, honest to God, see a future – where everyone, rich and poor, does their part and has a part. A future where we depend more on clean energy from home and less on oil from abroad.”
4. “He has a plan to strengthen and grow America’s middle class with lower taxes; a government that works for the American people instead of dashing their hopes and dreams; lower energy prices; and greater access to a quality education for all.”
5. “If you choose this path, we can cut our oil imports in half by 2020 and support more than 600,000 new jobs in natural gas alone.”
6. “[The candidate’s] energy programme is the real deal. It moves us forward, not backward. Forward to fuel efficient cars, a healthy auto industry and good middle class jobs. Forward to a healthier planet and forward to a new energy frontier in American energy independence.”
A. President Barack Obama (DNC)
B. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (RNC)
C. Republican Governor of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty (RNC)
D. Vice President Joe Biden (DNC)
E. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar (DNC)
F. Mitt Romney, Republican presidential candidate (RNC)
Confused? Don’t beat yourself up. Energy seems to be the only area of policy where there’s common ground. Whether they’re on the stump in Florida or North Carolina, all candidates seek US energy independence by exploiting the country’s own oil and gas riches and advancing renewable energy technology.
That’s how ‘all of the above’ became the bipartisan energy policy mantra. Take a look.
“We believe in energy independence. We support an ‘all of the above’ approach that encourages the responsible production of nuclear power, clean coal, solar, wind, geothermal and hydropower, as well as drilling for oil and natural gas in an environmentally responsible way.” Sound like Democratic spiel? Wrong – it comes straight off the Grand Old Party’s website.
Here’s the Democratic ticket: “We can move towards a sustainable energy-independent future if we harness all of America’s great natural resources. That means an all-of-the-above approach to developing America’s many energy resources, including wind, solar, biofuels, geothermal, hydropower, nuclear, oil, clean coal and natural gas.”
The rhetoric share ideological patina, but drill deeper – excusing the pun – and there are marked differences.
As Wildcat has pointed out, Obama’s ‘all of the above’ policy has a ‘but’. “But unlike my opponent, I will not let oil companies write this country’s energy plan, or endanger our coastlines, or collect another $4 billion in corporate welfare from our taxpayers,” he told the DNC last week.
While Obama boasted that the US had opened up millions of acres to oil and gas exploration, fact-checking websites were quick to point out that that was on private, not public land. Mark J. Perry, professor at the American Enterprise Institute, testified to Congress in May that crude oil and gas production on public land fell by 14% and 11%, respectively, in 2011.
The Romney camp, on the other hand, has accused Obama of pursuing alternative energy sources at the public’s expense. “President Obama has intentionally sought to shut down oil, gas and coal production in pursuit of his own alternative energy agenda,” he said in a policy paper released in late August.
So, the pledges contain policy differences. But we’re neglecting the quiz. So here are the answers: 1=B; 2=F; 3=D; 4=C; 5=A; 6=E. SS